United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fayetteville Division
ERIN L. WIEDEMANN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Connie Lynn Eiland, 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 her claims for a period of disability
and disability insurance benefits (DIB) and supplemental
security income (SSI) under the provisions of Titles II and
XVI 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. §
protectively filed her current applications for DIB and SSI
on June 23, 2014, and February 5, 2015, respectively,
alleging an inability to work since March 19, 2014, due to
depression, fibromyalgia, headaches, and fatigue. (Tr. 94,
105, ). For DIB purposes, Plaintiff maintained insured status
through December 31, 2017. (Tr. 94, 105, ). An administrative
hearing was held on June 24, 2015, and a supplemental hearing
was held on August 23, 2016. (Tr. 40-65, 66-92). At both
hearings, Plaintiff and a vocational expert testified. (Tr.
written decision dated October 19, 2016, the ALJ found that
during the relevant time period, Plaintiff had severe
impairments of degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine,
bulging discs at ¶ 4-5 and L5-S1 status post epidural
steroid injection, fibromyalgia, depression and anxiety. (Tr.
13). However, after reviewing all of the evidence presented,
the ALJ determined that Plaintiff's impairment 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. 13). The ALJ found that Plaintiff
retained the residual functional capacity (RFC) to perform
light work as defined in 20 CFR §§ 404.1567(b) and
416.967(b), except that she was able to perform work with
simple tasks and simple instructions and could only have
incidental contact with the public. (Tr. 14). With the help
of a vocational expert (VE), the ALJ determined that although
Plaintiff was unable to perform her past relevant work as a
pathology technician, there were jobs that existed in
significant numbers in the national economy that Plaintiff
could perform, such as a marking clerk, shelving clerk, and a
routing clerk. (Tr. 25). The ALJ concluded that the Plaintiff
had not been under a disability, as defined in the Social
Security Act, from March 19, 2014, through the date of the
decision. (Tr. 25).
then requested a review of the hearing decision by the
Appeals Council, but the request was denied on October 30,
2017. (Tr. 1-6). Subsequently, Plaintiff filed this action.
(Doc. 1). This case is before the undersigned pursuant to the
consent of the parties. (Doc. 7). Both parties have filed
appeal briefs, and the case is now ready for decision. (Docs.
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
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).
 Andrew M. Saul, has been appointed to
serve as Commissioner of Social Security, and is substituted
as Defendant, pursuant to Rule 25(d)(1) of the Federal ...