United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Texarkana Division
BARRY A. BRYANT U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Hampton (“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 Supplemental
Security Income (“SSI”) under Title XVI of the
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 current disability application on
August 16, 2012. (Tr. 12). In this application, Plaintiff
alleges being disabled due to a number of impairments:
bulging discs, degeneration in the back, knee trouble, and
hip trouble. (Tr. 200). Plaintiff alleges an onset date of
January 13, 2002. (Tr. 164). Her application was denied
initially and again upon reconsideration. (Tr. 59-70).
requested an administrative hearing on her denied
application. (Tr. 99-101). This request was granted, and
Plaintiff's initial administrative hearing was held on
June 10, 2014. (Tr. 50-57). Thereafter, the ALJ held a second
administrative hearing on January 21, 2015. (Tr. 26-49). This
second administrative hearing was held in Texarkana,
Arkansas. Id. At this hearing, Plaintiff was present
and was represented by Greg Giles. Id. Plaintiff and
Vocational Expert (“VE”) Mr. Thomas testified at this
April 22, 2015, after the administrative hearing, the ALJ
entered a fully unfavorable decision denying Plaintiff's
application. (Tr. 9-20). The ALJ determined Plaintiff had not
engaged in Substantial Gainful Activity (“SGA”)
since August 16, 2012, her application date. (Tr. 14, Finding
1). The ALJ determined Plaintiff had the following severe
impairments: degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine
with herniated nucleus pulposus; obesity; and left knee
degenerative joint disease status post arthroscopy. (Tr. 14,
Finding 2). 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.
14, Finding 3).
opinion, the ALJ determined Plaintiff was thirty-three (33)
years old, which is defined as a “younger person”
under 20 C.F.R. § 416.963(c) (SSI). (Tr. 19, Finding 6).
As for her education, the ALJ determined Plaintiff had a high
school education and was able to communicate in English. (Tr.
19, Finding 7).
decision, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and determined her RFC. (Tr. 15-19, Finding 4).
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 the following:
After careful consideration of the entire record, the
undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual
functional capacity to perform sedentary work as defined in
20 CFR 416.967(a) with occasional balancing, stooping,
kneeling, crouching, crawling, and climbing ramps/stairs but
not ladders, ropes or scaffolds; must be allowed to shift
positions while seated at will and must be able to stand from
the seated position every 30 minutes.
evaluated Plaintiff's Past Relevant Work
(“PRW”) and found Plaintiff did not retain the
capacity to perform any of her PRW. (Tr. 19, Finding 5). The
ALJ then considered whether Plaintiff retained the capacity
to perform other work existing in significant numbers in the
national economy. (Tr. 19-20, Finding 9). The VE testified at
the administrative hearing regarding this issue. Id.
Based upon this testimony and considering her RFC, the ALJ
determined Plaintiff retained the capacity to perform the
following occupations: (1) patcher with 6, 800 such jobs in
the nation and (2) touch-up screener with 8, 500 such jobs in
the nation. (Tr. 20). Because Plaintiff retained the capacity
to perform this other work, the ALJ determined Plaintiff had
not been under a disability, as defined by the Act, at any
time from August 16, 2012 through the date of his decision or
through April 22, 2015. (Tr. 20, Finding 10).
sought review with the Appeals Council. On June 28, 2016, the
Appeals Council denied her request for review. (Tr. 1-3). On
August 2, 2016, Plaintiff filed a Complaint in her case. ECF
No. 1. Both Parties have filed appeal briefs and have
consented to the jurisdiction of this Court. ECF Nos. 5,
11-12. This case is now ready for decision.