United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fort Smith Division
ERIN L. WIEDEMANN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Sheila Marie Williams, 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 July 2, 2015, and July 15, 2015, respectively, alleging an
inability to work since January 26, 2015, due to a broken
sternum and three damaged joints in her back. (Tr. 116, 125,
136, 149). For DIB purposes, Plaintiff maintained insured
status through December 31, 2019. (Tr. 116, 125, 136, 149).
An administrative hearing was held on February 23, 2017,
where Plaintiff appeared and testified. (Tr. 88-109). Deborah
Steele, Vocational Expert (VE), also appeared and testified.
written decision dated June 9, 2017, the ALJ found that
during the relevant time period, Plaintiff had severe
impairments of hypertension; degenerative disc disease of the
cervical spine with bulges at ¶ 4-5, C5-6, and C6-7;
degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine with bulging
discs at ¶ 3-4, L4-5, and L5-S1; fracture of the
sternum; anxiety; and depression. (Tr. 30). 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. 30-32). 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 could perform only occasional overhead
reaching; she was limited to jobs involving simple tasks and
simple instructions; and she would have only incidental
contact with the general public. (Tr. 32). With the help of a
vocational expert (VE), the ALJ determined that although
Plaintiff was unable to perform her past relevant work as a
dental assistant, there were other jobs that existed in
significant numbers in the national economy that Plaintiff
could perform, such as a cotton aid classer, a scaling
machine operator, and a laminating machine offbeat. (Tr. 38).
The ALJ concluded that the Plaintiff had not been under a
disability, as defined in the Social Security Act, from
January 26, 2015, through the date of the decision. (Tr. 38).
then requested a review of the hearing decision by the
Appeals Council, but the request was denied on January 24,
2018. (Tr. 1-6). Subsequently, Plaintiff filed this action.
(Doc. 1). This case is before the undersigned pursuant to the
consent of the parties. (Doc. 5). 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).
SO ORDERED AND ADJUDGED.
 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 ...