Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Rogers v. Berryhill

United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Harrison Division

December 1, 2017

JESSE CURTIS ROGERS PLAINTIFF
v.
NANCY A. BERRYHILL, [1] Commissioner Social Security Administration DEFENDANT

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          HON. ERIN L. WIEDEMANN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         Plaintiff, Jesse Curtis Rogers brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), seeking judicial review of a decision of the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration (Commissioner) denying his claims for a period of disability and disability insurance benefits (DIB) under the provisions of Title II of the Social Security Act (Act). In this judicial review, the Court must determine whether there is substantial evidence in the administrative record to support the Commissioner's decision. See 42 U.S.C. § 405(g).

         Plaintiff protectively filed his current application for DIB on August 14, 2013, alleging an inability to work since May 28, 2013, due to shoulder pain, back pain, a burn injury, depression, ADD (attention deficit disorder), joint pain, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder), and anxiety. (Tr. 107-108, 187). An administrative hearing was held on August 28, 2014, at which Plaintiff appeared with counsel and testified. (Tr. 49-105). A vocational expert and Plaintiff's wife also testified at this hearing.

         By written decision dated May 29, 2015, the ALJ found that during the relevant time period, Plaintiff had an impairment or combination of impairments that were severe. (Tr. 32). Specifically, the ALJ found Plaintiff had the following severe impairments: osteoarthritis/degenerative disc disease of the lumbar and cervical spine; mild obesity; history of right clavicle fracture; hypertension; history of burns to the upper body; history of hernia and small bowel obstruction surgery; history of syncope; depression; generalized anxiety with panic attacks; and PTSD. However, after reviewing all of the evidence presented, the ALJ determined that Plaintiff's impairments did not meet or equal the level of severity of any impairment listed in the Listing of Impairments found in Appendix I, Subpart P, Regulation No. 4. (Tr. 33). The ALJ found Plaintiff retained the residual functional capacity (RFC) to:

perform light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) except he must avoid concentrated exposure to extreme heat and must avoid any work that involves exposure to direct sunlight. He must also avoid concentrated exposure to hazards including no driving as part of work. In addition, the claimant is capable of work where interpersonal contact is incidental to the work performed, the complexity of tasks is learned and performed by rote, with few variables and little use of judgment, and the supervision required is simple, direct and concrete.

(Tr. 35). With the help of a vocational expert, the ALJ determined Plaintiff could perform work as a machine tender, an inspector, and a price marker. (Tr. 42).

         Plaintiff then requested a review of the hearing decision by the Appeals Council, which after reviewing additional evidence submitted by Plaintiff, denied that request on June 22, 2016. (Tr. 1-4). Subsequently, Plaintiff filed this action. (Doc. 1). This case is before the undersigned pursuant to the consent of the parties. (Doc. 6). Both parties have filed appeal briefs, and the case is now ready for decision. (Docs. 12, 13).

         This Court's role is to determine whether the Commissioner's findings are supported by substantial evidence on the record as a whole. Ramirez v. Barnhart, 292 F.3d 576, 583 (8th Cir. 2002). Substantial evidence is less than a preponderance but it is enough that a reasonable mind would find it adequate to support the Commissioner's decision. The ALJ's decision must be affirmed if the record contains substantial evidence to support it. Edwards v. Barnhart, 314 F.3d 964, 966 (8th Cir. 2003). 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. Haley v. Massanari, 258 F.3d 742, 747 (8th Cir. 2001). In other words, if after reviewing the record it is possible to draw two inconsistent positions from the evidence and one of those positions represents the findings of the ALJ, the decision of the ALJ must be affirmed. Young v. Apfel, 221 F.3d 1065, 1068 (8th Cir. 2000).

         The Court has reviewed the entire transcript and the parties' briefs. For the reasons stated in the ALJ's well-reasoned opinion and the Government's brief, the Court finds Plaintiff's arguments on appeal to be without merit and finds that the record as a whole reflects substantial evidence to support the ALJ's decision. Accordingly, the ALJ's decision is hereby summarily affirmed and Plaintiff's Complaint is dismissed with prejudice. See Sledge v. Astrue, No. 08-0089, 2008 WL 4816675 (W.D. Mo. Oct. 31, 2008) (summarily affirming ALJ's denial of disability benefits), aff'd, 364 Fed.Appx. 307 (8th Cir. 2010).

         IT IS SO ORDERED AND ADJUDGED.

---------

Notes:

[1] Nancy A. Berryhill, has been appointed to serve as acting Commissioner of Social Security, and is substituted as Defendant, pursuant to Rule 25(d)(1) of the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.