United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Texarkana Division
BARRY A. BRYANT U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Jean Garrett (“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 applications for Supplemental
Security Income (“SSI”), Disability Insurance
Benefits (“DIB”), and a period of disability
under Titles II and XVI 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 applications March 27,
2013. (Tr. 14). In her applications, Plaintiff alleges being
disabled due to fibromyalgia, restless leg syndrome, and
carpal tunnel syndrome. (Tr. 200). Plaintiff alleges an onset
date of March 15, 2013. (Tr. 14). These applications were
denied initially and again upon reconsideration. (Tr.
Plaintiff requested an administrative hearing on her denied
applications. (Tr. 135-136). This hearing request was
granted, and Plaintiff's administrative hearing was held
on November 12, 2014 in Texarkana, Arkansas. (Tr. 30-65). The
ALJ determined Plaintiff was fifty (50) years old on her
alleged onset date. (Tr. 35). Such a person is categorized as
a “person closely approaching advanced age”
pursuant to 20 C.F.R. § 404.1563(d) and 20 C.F.R. §
416.963(d). As for her education, the ALJ determined she had
obtained her GED but had no additional training beyond that.
to this hearing, the ALJ entered a fully unfavorable decision
denying Plaintiff's applications. (Tr. 11-24). In that
decision, the ALJ determined Plaintiff met the insured status
requirements of the Act through December 31, 2017. (Tr. 17,
Finding 1). The ALJ determined Plaintiff had not engaged in
Substantial Gainful Activity (“SGA”) since March
15, 2013, her alleged onset date. (Tr. 17, Finding 2). The
ALJ determined Plaintiff has the following severe
impairments: fibromyalgia, obesity, restless leg syndrome,
and diminished left eye vision. (Tr. 17-18, 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. 18-19, Finding 4).
decision, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and determined her RFC. (Tr. 19-23, 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, I find that
the claimant has the residual functional capacity to perform
light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) and 416.967(b)
except she is limited to lifting 20 pounds occasionally and
10 pounds frequently; she is unlimited in her ability to push
and/or pull (including operation of hand and/or foot
controls), other than shown for her ability to lift and/or
carry; she is limited to sitting 6 hours in an 8-hour
workday, no more than 2 hours continuously; standing and
walking no more than 6 hours in an 8-hour workday, no more
than 2 hours continuously; she is able to occasionally climb
ladders, ropes, and/or scaffolds, climb ramps/stairs,
balance, stoop, bend, squat, kneel, crawl, and crouch; she is
able to count fingers at 3 meters with her left eye and her
right eye has no limits; and she has no hearing,
manipulative, environment, or communication limitations. She
has no mental or other impairments that would prevent her
from understanding, remembering, and carrying out job tasks
and instructions; paying attention; interacting sufficiently
with others; make job related decisions, or adapts to changes
in the work environment. See SSR 83-12.
her RFC, the ALJ determined whether Plaintiff was able to
perform any of her Past Relevant Work (“PRW”)
during the relevant time period. (Tr. 23-24, Finding 6).
Considering her PRW and her RFC, the ALJ determined Plaintiff
retained the capacity of performing her PRW as a
cashier/checker (semi-skilled, light). (Tr. 23-24, Finding
6). Because she retained the capacity of performing her PRW,
the ALJ determined Plaintiff was not under a disability, as
defined by the Act, from March 15, 2013 through the date of
his decision or through May 28, 2015. (Tr. 24, Finding 7).
sought review with the Appeals Council. (Tr. 8). On August
15, 2016, the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request
for review. Id. On September 13, 2016, 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, 11-12. This case is
now ready for decision.
reviewing this case, this Court is required to determine
whether the Commissioner's findings are supported by
substantial evidence on the record as a whole. See
42 U.S.C. § 405(g) (2010); Ramirez v. Barnhart,292 F.3d 576, 583 (8th Cir. 2002). Substantial evidence is
less than a preponderance of the evidence, but it is enough
that a reasonable mind would find it adequate to support the
Commissioner's decision. See Johnson v. Apfel,240 F.3d 1145, 1147 (8th Cir. 2001). As long as there is
substantial evidence in the record that supports the
Commissioner's decision, the Court may not reverse it
simply because substantial evidence exists in the record that
would have supported a contrary outcome or because the Court
would have decided the case differently. See Haley v.
Massanari,258 F.3d 742, 747 (8th Cir. 2001). If, after
reviewing the record, it is possible to ...