United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Texarkana Division
BARRY A. BRYANT, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Green (“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 on April 3,
2014. (Tr. 16). In these applications, Plaintiff alleges she
is disabled due to lupus, fluid in her lungs, rapid heart
rate, shortness of breath, physical discomfort, type 2
diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, and swelling. (Tr.
242). Plaintiff alleges an onset date of December 28, 2012.
(Tr. 16). These applications were denied initially and again
upon reconsideration. (Tr. 70-106).
Plaintiff requested an administrative hearing on her
applications, and this hearing request was granted. (Tr.
35-69). An administrative hearing was held on April 7, 2016
in McAlester, Oklahoma. Id. At the administrative
hearing, Plaintiff was present and was represented by Greg
Giles. Id. Plaintiff and Vocational Expert
(“VE”) Diana Kaiser testified at this hearing.
3, 2016, the ALJ entered an unfavorable decision on
Plaintiff's disability applications. (Tr. 13-28). In this
decision, the ALJ found Plaintiff met the insured status
requirements of the Act through December 31, 2017. (Tr. 18,
Finding 1). The ALJ found Plaintiff had not engaged in
Substantial Gainful Activity (“SGA”) since
December 28, 2012. (Tr. 18, Finding 2). The ALJ determined
Plaintiff had the following severe impairments: lupus;
hypertension; diabetes mellitus, type II; and obesity. (Tr.
19-20, Finding 3). The ALJ, however, also determined
Plaintiff did not have an impairment or combination of
impairments that met or medically equaled one of the listed
impairments in 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1.
(Tr. 20-21, Finding 4).
decision, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and determined her RFC. (Tr. 21-26, Finding 5).
First, the ALJ evaluated Plaintiff's subjective
complaints and determined they were not entirely credible.
Id. Second, the ALJ determined Plaintiff retained
the RFC for 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 404.1567(a) and 416.967(a) except she can occasionally
climb of ramps and stairs; she can never climb ladders,
ropes, or scaffolds; she can occasionally balance, stoop,
kneel, crouch, or crawling [crawl]; and she must be allowed
to alternate between sitting and standing every 15-20 minutes
through the workday for the purpose of changing positions but
without leaving the workstation.
determined Plaintiff was forty (40) years old, which is
defined as a “younger individual” under 20 C.F.R.
§ 416.963(c) (SSI) and 20 C.F.R. § 404.1563(c)
(DIB). (Tr. 27, Finding 7). The ALJ also determined Plaintiff
had at least a high school education and was able to
communicate in English. (Tr. 27, Finding 8).
evaluated Plaintiff's Past Relevant Work
(“PRW”) and determined Plaintiff was unable to
perform any of her PRW. (Tr. 26, Finding 6). The ALJ did,
however, determine Plaintiff retained the capacity to perform
other work existing in significant numbers in the national
economy. (Tr. 27-28, Finding 10). Specifically, the ALJ
determined Plaintiff retained the capacity to perform
unskilled, sedentary work as an (1) order clerk with 40, 000
such jobs in the national economy; and (2) call out operator
with 21, 000 such jobs in the national economy. (Tr. 27).
Furthermore, the ALJ determined Plaintiff also retained the
capacity to perform her past job as a customer service
representative. Id. Accordingly, based upon this
finding, the ALJ determined Plaintiff had not been under a
disability, as defined by the Act, from December 28, 2012
through the date of the ALJ's decision or through May 6,
2016. (Tr. 28, Finding 11).
requested the Appeals Council's review the ALJ's
unfavorable disability determination. (Tr.1). On June 23,
2017, the Appeals Council declined to review the ALJ's
disability determination. (Tr. 1-3). On August 3, 2017,
Plaintiff filed the present appeal. ECF No. 1. The Parties
consented to the jurisdiction of this Court on August 3,
2017. ECF No. 5. Both Parties have filed appeal briefs. ECF
Nos. 11-12. This case is now ready for decision.