Federal Agency Assistance FAQs
Serving You: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Q: The agency has denied my claim/application. Can Senator Feinstein help me appeal the decision?
A: While Senator Feinstein’s office can make an inquiry on your behalf about the status of a pending case or for clarification on the reasons for a denial, it would be inappropriate for the senator or members of her staff to compel an agency to decide an issue in your favor, or overturn a final decision. If your case has been denied, you should first contact the agency for information on your appeal options.
Q: Can Senator Feinstein help me expedite my claim or application with a federal agency?
A: Each agency has criteria for considering expedited requests. First, you should contact the agency or office where your application or claim is being processed to determine what is required for your case to be considered for expedited review.
If you have trouble contacting the agency, please send the request, including evidence showing a need for expedited attention, to the senator’s casework staff. Please refer to the “tips for requesting casework assistance” for more information and call the San Francisco office with any questions.
Q: Can I request casework for a matter involving an agency under the jurisdiction of the state or county?
A: Senator Feinstein’s staff has access to liaison offices for U.S. federal agencies, not state or county agencies.
For assistance with a state agency or department, you should write to your representatives in the California State Senate or Assembly and/or contact the office of the governor. Staff in these offices have direct access to state agencies and can better assist you.
Q: Can Senator Feinstein help me with my legal case or court hearing?
A: Senate rules prohibit Senator Feinstein and her staff from giving legal advice or intervening in court proceedings. If you are seeking assistance with a case that involves a lawsuit or that is pending litigation and you need help finding an attorney, please refer to the following organizations: The American Bar Association Correspondence Unit, for low-income Californians, or the American Immigration Lawyers Association, for immigration cases.
Q: Can Senator Feinstein help me with predatory lending or a pending home foreclosure?
A: Please review the HUD website for tips on navigating the issue of predatory lending and/or foreclosures. If, after exploring these options, you write to Senator Feinstein about the case, please be sure to include your loan number, lender name and any recent statements or letters you have received from your lender regarding the loan’s status.
Q: Why does Senator Feinstein’s office need my complete Social Security number?
A: When Senator Feinstein’s staff contacts a federal agency on your behalf, the office’s liaison at the agency needs to verify your identity and retrieve information connected to your case to address your concerns. In most cases, the best way to verify your identity and look up your case history is with your Social Security number. For immigration cases, an alien registration number or passport number is preferred.
Q: Where can I get information on federal grants?