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Success Stories

FROM SEVENTH DISTRICT CONSTITUENTS

"I reached out to Rep. Abigail Spanberger's office several months ago after filing my tax return and receiving no answers as to where my refund was (like so many others.) Shawn reached out to me within hours of my initial call. For months, Shawn has stayed in constant contact with me. He answered all my emails quickly after reaching out to my TA for updates, and he provided me with weekly updates. He stayed concerned and advocated for me until he received an answer about my return. When he received the date, he called to tell me and he was genuinely as excited as I was to finally have a resolution.

I could not be any happier with the help, communication, and support I received from Rep. Spanberger's office. Thank you again so much from my whole family! We all know how hard things have been and to have someone fighting for you for something that doesn't benefit them at all is the best feeling." – Kristin Paixao

"After contacting Abigail Spanberger's office about an issue, I can honestly say I have never had a more responsive and helpful experience from any state or federal representative as I had with that office. In August, I contacted Representative Spanberger's office to see if they could assist in determining the case of the many-months delay in receiving our federal tax refund. I received a return phone call from a staff person that same afternoon. He asked for some additional information, and told us we would hear back within two weeks. Before two weeks were up, he called us back with the pertinent information. Apparently, our return got stuck in the 'taxpayer protection program,' set up to avoid identity theft. The staff person gave us detailed information on what we needed to do to provide our identity to release the return. We're still not clear on why the IRS never informed us of the hold in the TPP, but we were thoroughly impressed with the knowledge, professionalism, and support Representative Spanberger's office provided ... I offer a sincere, public 'thank you' to Representative Spanberger and her staff for the high level of support they provide to all of her constituents!" – Alyson Sappington

"Thank you for excellent constituent service! You cannot avoid death or taxes, but I got help from Congresswoman Spanberger's staff. My mother died on January 3, 2020. I filed her 2019 tax returns in March. Calls and emails to the IRS showed "return being processed." When I sent an email to Congresswoman Spanberger, I got a prompt return call and patient help with completing forms and sending the information needed to get a real status update. Weeks later, the refund was processed! The Congresswoman's staff called me and made sure I gave the IRS the necessary information. I appreciate the help, and knowing my Congresswoman responded when I needed attention!" – Dena Rosenkrantz 

"My frustration trying to navigate the IRS system reached a tipping point, so I reached out to Abigail Spanberger's office. Almost immediately after reaching out, Shawn from her office got in touch with me about my problem with receiving my tax return and stimulus check. He worked with me for about 2 months, finally getting me both by today. I can only imagine how much longer I would have had to wait (or possibly have been forgotten about by the government.) Thank you so much to Abigail and Shawn, you and your team are amazing! – Katrina Aducci

"I am so grateful to Congresswoman Spanberger and her staff for their quick availability and efficiency in helping resolve my mother's tax obligation. My mother has been in respite care for five years and has been in hospice for the last six months, and her money is quickly running out. With Congresswoman Spanberger's advocacy staff, my mother received a "Case Closed" and has been removed from collection attempts by the IRS. The entire process was easy and seamless and I cannot thank them enough for resolving this situation with the Internal Revenue Service."
– Lori Tracoma

"I would like, with great appreciation, to thank Abigail Spanberger and [District Coordinator] Shawn Meredith for resolving a very upsetting Social Security problem. It started with my receiving a letter from Social Security stating I was overpaid over $9,000. They planned for me to repay it by not sending me the next 3+ months checks! That was very upsetting to say the least. I called Abigail Spanberger and explained my predicament. She connected me with Shawn Meredith, to look into this matter ASAP. Shawn was able to solve the problem in a matter of days, whereas it would have taken me at least weeks with many phones calls and no successful resolution. The Social Security office admitted they had made a mistake. They actually owed me over $8,000 which they paid promptly. With the help of Shawn Meredith in Abigail Spanberger's office, my problem got resolved quickly. Thank you to Abigail Spanberger and Shawn Meredith for all their help." 
– Gail Schwartz

"Abigail and her team were extremely responsive with a very time sensitive issue. It was less than two hours from our request that her team was on the phone with me and less than 24 hours before there was a resolution. I am thankful for your hard work and dedication to our district. Thank you again."
– Darwin Ramos 

"I really appreciated Representative Spanberger's staff handling an issue with obtaining a certificate of eligibility from the VA for a loan which was in process. My experience with both the DC and [Henrico] office was both courteous and professional."
– Bill Ware

"Abigail Spanberger and her team broke through traditional bureaucracy and found a swift solution to my dispute with the Virginia Army National Guard. You can place your trust in them."
– Shaliek Tarpley

"I would like to commend the staff of Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger. After a frustrating 14 months waiting for federal retirement benefits to be awarded through the Office of Personnel Management, Kristi Black and Shawn Meredith, through their diligence, were able to secure these benefits in eight days. I am impressed with their commitment to my case and their persistence in resolving this matter for me." 
– Cindy Bradley


"We had been waiting for a refund from the government for over a year. The office of Representative Spanberger worked on our behalf and we are thrilled that they resolved our situation and we received our refund. We so appreciate their attention to our need!"
– Pattie Cook

"We are extremely happy to receive our passports in such a short time, thanks to the help of Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger and her office. Special thanks to Kristi Black for going above and beyond to speed up our passports!"
– Silvia Bilacchi

"Thank you to you and your staff, especially Shawn Meredith, for working expediently and efficiently to resolve our difficulties! We filed for SSI and SSDI right after Shane experienced a disabling stroke in February 2020. We encountered many difficulties in obtaining status of the applications and having them processed. COVID-19 compounded the situation. Shawn repeatedly contacted the agencies involved and kept us updated as well. We finally received a lump sum check from SSI and have confirmation that SSDI will be paid in September 2020. We are so grateful for your assistance and compassion."
– Suzanne Lane, Shane Peoples 

"My son is autistic and was receiving Social Security benefits until his payments were arbitrarily stopped. The Social Security Administration also demanded repayment of 18 months' payments. Ms. Spanberger launched an investigation which resulted in his benefits retroactively being reinstated." 
– Brad Mena

"I came to Representative Spanberger as a last resort. To be honest, I didn't expect it to actually work. I was pleasantly surprised when Rep. Spanberger's team told me not even a week later, they got the job done."
– Trinity Carl

"My youngest daughter was getting married and her brother, a Captain in the Army, was stationed across the country. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Department of Defense was enforcing a strict travel ban. With time running out for my son to obtain authorization to travel, I reached out to Congresswoman Spanberger's office. They quickly jumped into action and had my son fill out a form requesting assistance after describing his situation. The form was forwarded to the Army and within two days, my son was granted leave. While I learned a great number of things through this experience, the biggest lesson I learned is that our representatives are here to help us through these types of situations. If you ever find yourself in a similar situation, please reach out to your representative and ask them to help. While they're not miracle workers, their efforts can go a long way to get people's attention who may not otherwise take notice."
– James Black

"I contacted Rep. Spanberger's office as a result of issues with my Social Security/Railroad Retirement Benefit. As my husband worked for the railroad, my Social Security is paid by the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). In trying to resolve my problem, the Social Security Administration would tell me to call RRB and RRB would tell me to call the Social Security Administration. They both told me it was the other agency's error. Shawn Meredith from Rep. Spanberger's office was very diligent and arranged a conference call with both agencies and myself. As a result, my problem was resolved to my satisfaction. Mr. Meredith never fave up. It took months to get this done, and he periodically checked in with me on the progress to find resolution. I am confident that I would still be getting the "run around" if Mr. Meredith had not assisted me. I am thankful for the help and highly recommend contacting Rep. Spanberger's office if you need an issue resolved!"
– Lynne Inge 

"I had trouble having the Social Security Administration (SSA) refund me the Medicare IRMAA overpayment that I made in 2019. I reached out to Congresswoman Spanberger's office to submit my case to SSA. Her office staff took action promptly and kept track of the status. The staff also kept me updated in a timely manner. SSA finally processed the request and made the refund."
– Cathy Chang

"I do not even know where to begin. I am a mother of 3 who has lost her job due to the pandemic. Filed my taxes in Feb. 2020 and had no update or any info on when my refund would be sent out. I reached out to Shawn Meredith, my District Coordinator, I cannot praise this man enough! Shawn was extremely professional, always prompt on responding back to my emails and any questions I had. My case was very challenging, especially with the IRS shut due to COVID-19. My refund was at a standstill. Furthermore, Shawn inquired and found that the reason for this was my 2016 was not filed. I never knew about this but thank God for Shawn. He moved mountains and got my 2019 refund issue for me through the TA. Shawn also made sure he was always available by phone and via email. 

I would like to point out Shawn had this done within about 3 weeks of me reaching out to him. Another bonus for my children and I is I will receive my 2016 refund once the IRS reopens. My case required a lot of time and effort and Shawn put every ounce into my case. Once my refund was issued, my stimulus check also followed. NONE OF THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE WITHOUT SHAWN! My children and I suffered severe hardship and Shawn helped me and now I am able to pay my bills and provide for my kids with the refund. Words cannot even describe how grateful I am to Shawn. He saved me during this pandemic, forever grateful to him. I have never come across such a helpful, polite, professional individual. The world needs more people like him! Thank you Shawn, God bless you always!" 
– Andleeb Ahmed

"I was frustrated at not receiving ANY information regarding my Federal tax refund more than six months after I had filed my return. I had tried reaching out to the IRS multiple times, but was never able to speak with a person or learn any additional information. I actually came across a Reddit discussion online where someone had mentioned reaching out to their congressional representative. I decided, 'Why not?' since nothing else I had tried had led to any real results. I called Abigail Spanberger's office and left a message with a brief description of my problem. A district coordinator from Ms. Spanberger's office called me back within 48 hours. I was then able to explain the situation in detail, and Mr. Shawn Meredith immediately began researching the problem. He also had a Tax Advocate reach out to me personally. In just over a week's time, the problem I had struggled with for 6 months had been resolved. I received my tax refund 3 weeks later. I am most appreciative to everyone who helped!"
– Abbi Buchanan 

"On January 4,2020 my husband of 63 years passed away as the result of a massive stroke. I eventually contacted Social Security to inquire about receiving a share of my husband's social security check. I was told to go to the office in Culpeper, and to bring all my identification including the death certificate, I did this, waited two hours only to be told that they could not take care of it but that a check of the computer indicated that I had been scheduled for a phone interview on March 24, at 11:00. I did ask why I was not informed of this when I talked to SS but was told that I would receive a letter with all the information, no letter ever appeared. This took place in early February, On March 24 at 11:00 I was waiting by my phone. I did not receive a call. I immediately called SS only to be told that there was no one to talk to me.

I really did not know what to do. It was then that I called Rep. Spanberger's office, spoke to a lady there and was told that someone would get back to me. After 15 years in Florida I figured that was the end for me. Imagine my surprise when not three hours later I received a call from Shawn. He listened to me and then requested that I put this into writing and mail it to him. He also requested that I not try to contact Social Security again. Three weeks later I received a phone call from Social Security. They apologized but did not have a valid reason why I had been ignored, They then interviewed me by phone and advised that I was eligible for a share of my husband's benefit. Shawn, you are my hero! I was amazed that Rep. Spanberger's office handled this so efficiently for me. I cannot emphasize enough the care that they showed."
– Jane Nelson

"My wife and I filed our taxes in April 2019 and received a notice from the IRS in May 2019 that our return was under review. We patiently waited for our case to be closed but there was no progress. In January 2020, I read a newsletter from Representative Spanberger's office, that claimed they ad helped constituents with federal agencies. In February, I decided to fill out a contact form and within 48 hours, Shawn Meredith reached out to me. Mr. Meredith expressed genuine concern, and explained everything he needed, and what actions he would take. Through his work with taxpayer advocacy it was discovered that the employer submitted an incorrect W2 for my wife. After working on the issue for a few weeks, COVID-19 occurred and I assumed the progress would stall. Mr. Meredith called me to tell me there was progress and a resolution would occur by mid-April. On April 20, 2020, Shawn called to tell me we were receiving our refund and would get $198 in interest. If it was not for Representative Spanberger's office, and in particular, Shawn Meredith, our 2018 tax return of $3,861.44 would still be at the IRS. Mr. Meredith is a genuine professional who we are fortunate to have working for us! If I have a future issue, I wouldn't hesitate to call!" 
– Danny Fisher II

"I had an experience with the IRS and my Social Security. I exhausted all of my avenues for help. Didn't know which way to turn, so finally a friend said 'Call your representative.' I did, even though it was during the holidays. I called and they took this case and got it settled. I said if you have a problem too big for you, call the office of Rep. Spanberger. I say a big shout out to her assistant Shawn, he was a great help. They work for you." 
– Jacqueline Perry

"I contacted Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger's office for assistance in resolving an issue with the Social Security Administration (SSA): When I applied for my Social Security benefits several years ago, I was informed that I had to repay over $60,000 that I had collected due to a disability I had many years prior. So, for the past one and a half years I was not receiving any payments from the SSA in order to repay the monies I had collected. 

I subsequently learned that I could appeal the decision. I followed up with an appeal via Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger's office. There I met her District Manager Mr. Shawn Meredith. Mr. Meredith stuck with me as I filed my appeal and saw to it that I could repay a small portion every month and subsequently will receive nearly all of my allotment every month. He was always very professional and helpful and was able to reach SSA staff when I could not. I am very grateful he intervened in the process for me. 

Thanks again for all of the excellent assistance and caring for my survival in my later years of life." 
– John Lopes 

"When I went to file my taxes, I discovered that I had never received a 1099 2 form for my deceased husband for 2018. My husband MSGT (Ret.) William Donald Tomlinson Jr. had died July 19, 2018. I contacted DFAS on March 11, 2019. After being on hold for an hour and 13 minutes and telling my issue, I was told to telephone back in 7-10 days. I proceeded to phone a total of 10 times. Each time, I spoke to a different person, sometimes as many as 4 people, but never the same person. I wrote down names each time. During this time, I was told his final pay for July 2018 had not been processed, so I could not receive a 1099 2. That department would not receive phone calls. I was not alone in waiting. I had consulted my tax consultant, and - for the first time in 50 years - filed an extension. 

Finally, a friend told me I should contact my Representative, as that is why they hold the position. So I reached out to Rep. Spanberger by filling out the appropriate form on her web page. To my pleasant surprise, two days later I received a phone call from Shawn Meredith, District Coordinator. Shawn told me he would take care of the issue. True to his promise, he contacted me to say he had spoken to DFAS and given them 2 weeks to act on me receiving my husband's final check. I received the check in 10 days and the 1099 all within 3 weeks, after I had tried for 3 months.

Shawn was always available on the phone. Shawn is amazing! I cannot thank him enough for helping me in this stressful, difficult time. He is professional and compassionate. I hope Rep. Spanberger appreciates Shawn and knows how much he is helping her constituents. Thank you, thank you Shawn." 
– Judith Tomlinson

"I contacted Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger's office for assistance in resolving an issue with the Social Security Administration (SSA): When I retired on disability from the Cadmus Group in 2018, SSA incorrectly deducted too much for Medicare from my Social Security benefits and I had to file several requests for reconsideration appeals to SSA to correct/increase/reimburse my 2018 Social Security benefits and SSA was not prompt or helpful in its response. The Congresswoman's office, and specifically her District Manager Shawn Meredith, were very helpful in giving me advice on what to do in dealing with SSA, contacting SSA for information, and following up with me to track the status of my case with SSA. 

After 8 months of trying to resolve the issues involved, mostly on my own, Mr. Meredith contacted SSA himself, as my request, to determine the final status of my case for me when I could not get through to SSA staff on the phone and then relayed their decision to me. He was always very professional and helpful and was able to reach SSA staff when I could not. I was very grateful he intervened in the process for me." 
– Gloria Brienza

"Ms. Heidelmark and Congresswoman Spanberger - I want to express my sincere gratitude for the time and attention that was provided assisting me. I realize how busy you must be and know that it took a lot of time to process my requests. You demonstrated such a high level of support and professionalism by constantly communicating the status of my requests. Your patience and time was much appreciated and it is through your help that I have official copies of my military records and that my requests have been processed. I am grateful for all you did with assisting me. Thank you." 
– Janice Blair

"Since I will turn 65 in December, I went to Social Security's website and signed up for Medicare. When I received my card I noticed I had signed for Part A and Part B by mistake. I sent a letter to Medicare to refuse Part B on October 30. In the middle of November, I received a bill for $406.50 for the Part B insurance. As it was due by November 25, and I had not heard back from Medicare, I called my Congresswoman's office on November 20 and asked for help. Shawn Meredith got in touch with Medicare/Social Security, and on November 22 he forwarded their response, saying they had processed my request. I am so grateful for his help!"
– Mark Fagerburg 

"I wanted to sign up for Medicare Part B when my wife lost her job recently. I already had Part A and should have qualified for a special enrollment period. Social Security was denying me because we couldn't get the proof that I was covered by my wife's group insurance from employers that have been out of business for over 10 years, and said I would have to pay an approx. 120% penalty on my monthly premiums when I signed up during general enrollment. After contacting Rep. Spanberger's office, Shawn quickly got to work on our case, and I am happy to say that I was recently approved, even retroactively for when I had originally applied. Thank you, Shawn, Rep. Spanberger, and the entire office. You saved us several thousand dollars in medical bills plus kept my premiums from being more than double. We are glad to know that our Representative's office is working for the people." 
– J.S.

"My mother did not receive her federal tax return check. I called and went online with the IRS to get a status. I was unsuccessful getting any answers. I contacted Representative Spanberger's office. Shawn Meredith from her office contacted me within a day. He immediately sent the forms that needed to be filled out. Within 3 weeks, my mom's tax check arrived. I am very thankful for the help of Rep. Spanberger's office." 
– Sandra McLeod

"On Feb. 10, 2020, I contacted Rep. Spanberger's Henrico Office to request assistance with an issue involving SSA. On Mar. 11, 2020, I received a call from Shawn Meredith, District Coordinator, letting me know their office had received SSA's decision in a letter dated Mar 10.  My benefits will be restored retroactively. Per request, steps are also being taken to avoid repeat actions. Kudos to Shawn Meredith and Angele Russell who worked tirelessly to ensure SSA was making my case a priority. Their dedication was instrumental in bringing my case to a timely conclusion. Shawn Meredith and Angele Russell are consumate professionals who truly care about their constituents." 
– Marguerite Sciandra






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