July 08, 2020

Lawson Returns More Than $3.4 Million to North Florida Families, Closes Over 1,100 Cases

WASHINGTON, DC— U.S. Rep. Al Lawson (FL-05) announced that he and his staff have recovered more than $3.4 million owed to residents of Florida’s 5th Congressional District by helping to push their cases through the federal bureaucracy. 

Since taking office in January 2017, Rep. Lawson and his staff have closed more than 1,100 constituent cases, with 170 resulting in a financial reimbursement, with federal agencies.

“A large number of the cases we help with are dealing with Veterans Affairs (VA) issues,” Lawson said.  “Often times, when federal agencies know that a member of Congress is looking over their shoulders, it can push them to move work along.”

Two recent examples of Casework:

  • A veteran contacted our office because he was having difficulty getting his VA benefits. After we spoke with the VA General Counsel’s office and the regional office, the VA immediately released $186,232 in benefits that were owed to the veteran.
  • Another case we worked on resulted in a $20,000 payment for a Social Security Disability Insurance recipient who had been charged with an overpayment, after employer mistakenly overpaid her— resulting in her income being above the maximum threshold for recipients of SSDI. While she was working with her employer to resolve the wage issue, we contacted the Social Security Administration to obtain a one-time dire need payment to assist with her medical expenses while waiting for her benefits to restart.

Federal agencies Rep. Lawson’s office is often asked to help with are the Social Security Administration, Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of State, U.S. Postal Service, Housing and Urban Development, Department of Education, FEMA, and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

“Helping North Florida families recover monies they are owed from the federal government not only makes families whole again, but supports our local economy by keeping these dollars in Florida,” Rep. Lawson said. “I look forward to this amount growing as I help more people navigate the federal bureaucracy and cut through red tape.”

Citizens with questions about how Rep. Lawson’s office can provide assistance with federal issues — such as backlogged veterans’ benefits, stalled tax refunds, issues with social security, the postal service or the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services — can visit www.lawson.house.gov/contact.