Having problems with a federal agency? My office can help.
Congressman Blumenauer’s office works to advocate for his constituents when they are experiencing difficulties with federal agencies. Government procedures can be confusing and, in the age of automated answering systems, often frustrating. Caseworkers are trained to assist constituents by cutting through a myriad of departments and phone numbers. They can direct people to the appropriate office, provide them with necessary instructions, phone numbers or materials, and/or find out the status of an application.
Constituents will sometimes request that the Congressman "expedite" their applications for services or benefits. While a caseworker is available to obtain information regarding the status of a constituent's application or claim, this office has no authority to move one person's application ahead of others who are also waiting. However, if an emergency situation develops, a caseworker will communicate the circumstances to the agency and request that the agency take the appropriate actions.
Occasionally, a constituent will request that the Congressman use his influence to overturn a decision made by a federal agency. A caseworker is happy to assist constituents by forwarding information to the appropriate sources for consideration during the adjudication process. A Congressional office, however, does not have the authority to instruct a federal agency to approve or deny an application.
There are limitations to the types of casework that our office can assist you with. Members of Congress cannot intervene in criminal and civil legal cases because of the separation of the judicial and legislative branches of government. Likewise, Members of Congress have no authority over cases that involve Oregon state agencies. Agencies that we regularly assist people with include the Department of State, Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Veterans Administration, Medicare/Medicaid, and Department of Education.
How do I get help from a caseworker?
In order for our office to provide you with assistance, you will need to fill out a Privacy Release Form
. The purpose of this form is to allow our office to contact an agency on your behalf and for them to know that you consented to them sharing information with our office about your case. There are some specific cases where we will need additional information or a different Privacy Release Form and a caseworker will follow up with you concerning your case. Once we receive the Privacy Release Form, the appropriate caseworker will follow up with you and get your case started.
If you have questions about constituent services or are unsure what agency you are working with, please contact us.
In addition to the casework areas listed below, the office can also help with issues relating to the Post Office, the Office of Personnel Management, and other agencies.
Food and Utilities Assistance
Housing and Renting Services
Seniors, Social Security, and People with Disabilities
Students and Education
Taxes and Finance
Travel and Immigration
Veterans and Active Military
The Privacy Act of 1974 requires Congressional offices to obtain written permission from an individual before an agency can release any case-specific information.