United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fort Smith Division
BARRY A. BRYANT, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Larie Chronister (“Plaintiff”) brings this action
pursuant to § 205(g) of Title II of the Social Security
Act (“The Act”), 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) (2010),
seeking judicial review of a final decision of the
Commissioner of the Social Security Administration
(“SSA”) denying her application for Disability
Insurance Benefits (“DIB”) and a period of
disability under Title II of the Act.
Parties have consented to the jurisdiction of a magistrate
judge to conduct any and all proceedings in this case,
including conducting the trial, ordering the entry of a final
judgment, and conducting all post-judgment proceedings. ECF
No. 5. Pursuant to this authority, the Court
issues this memorandum opinion and orders the entry of a
final judgment in this matter.
protectively filed her disability application on August 17,
2009. (Tr. 8, 124-127). In her application, Plaintiff alleges
being disabled due to fibromyalgia, back pain, neck pain, and
shoulder pain. (Tr. 144). Plaintiff alleges an onset date of
July 14, 2008. (Tr. 8). This application was denied initially
and again upon reconsideration. (Tr. 60-61).
Plaintiff requested an administrative hearing on her denied
application, and that hearing request was granted. (Tr.
27-59). Plaintiff's first administrative hearing was held
on August 4, 2010 in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Id. After
that hearing, the ALJ entered a fully unfavorable decision
denying Plaintiff's DIB application. (Tr. 5-15).
Thereafter, Plaintiff appealed that denial to this the U.S.
District Court for the Western District of Arkansas. See
Chronister v. SSA, 2:12-cv-02117 (W.D. Nov. 26, 2012).
As a part of this appeal, the SSA requested Plaintiff's
case be reversed and remanded for additional record
development. Id. This request was granted, and
Plaintiff's case was reversed and remanded. Id.
ECF Nos. 8-9.
the ALJ held two additional administrative hearings, one on
August 16, 2012 and one on September 23, 2014. (Tr. 368-448). At
Plaintiff's third hearing on September 23, 2014,
Plaintiff was present and was represented by Iva Gibbons.
(Tr. 368-399). Plaintiff and Vocational Expert
(“VE”) John Massey testified at this hearing.
8, 2015, after her third administrative hearing, the ALJ
entered a fully unfavorable decision again denying
Plaintiff's application. (Tr. 348-360). The ALJ
determined Plaintiff met the insured status requirements of
the Act through June 30, 2015. (Tr. 353, Finding 1). The ALJ
determined Plaintiff had not engaged in Substantial Gainful
Activity (“SGA”) since her alleged onset date of
July 14, 2008. (Tr. 353, Finding 2). The ALJ determined
Plaintiff had the following severe impairments: fibromyalgia,
mild osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease of the
thoracolumbar spine with chronic back pain, and a history of
iron deficiency anemia. (Tr. 353-355, Finding 3). The ALJ
also determined Plaintiff's impairments did not meet or
medically equal the requirements of any of the Listings of
Impairments in Appendix 1 to Subpart P of Regulations No. 4
(“Listings”). (Tr. 355, Finding 4).
decision, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and determined her RFC. (Tr. 355-360, Finding 5).
First, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and found her claimed limitations were not
entirely credible. Id. Second, the ALJ determined
Plaintiff retained the capacity to perform a wide range of
After careful consideration of the entire record, the
undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual
functional capacity to perform light work as defined in 20
CFR 404.1567(b) except the claimant is able to occasionally
climb ramps and stairs, can never climb ladders, ropes and
scaffolds, and can occasionally balance, stoop, kneel, crouch
and crawl. In addition, she must avoid concentrated exposure
to temperature extremes, humidity, wetness and hazards and
cannot drive as a part of work.
then considered whether Plaintiff retained the capacity to
perform her Past Relevant Work (“PRW”). (Tr. 360,
Finding 6). Considering her RFC, age, education, and work
history, the ALJ determined Plaintiff retained the capacity
to perform her PRW as a panty hose seam machine operator and
inspector (light, semiskilled); and mail sorter (light,
skilled). Id. Because Plaintiff retained the
capacity to perform her PRW, the ALJ determined Plaintiff had
not been under a disability, as defined by the Act, from July
14, 2008 (alleged onset date) through May 8, 2015 (date of
the ALJ's decision). Id.
on August 31, 2015, Plaintiff filed her Complaint in this
case. ECF No. 1. Both Parties have filed appeal briefs and
have consented to the jurisdiction of this Court. ECF Nos. 5,
8, 10. This case is now ready for decision.