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Swaney v. Colvin

United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, New Albany Division

March 4, 2015

MARY J. SWANEY, Social Security No. XXX-XX-0991, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of the Social Security Administration, Defendant.

REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION ON APPROPRIATE DISPOSITION OF THE ACTION

WILLIAM G. HUSSMANN, Jr., District Judge.

This action is before me, William G. Hussmann, Jr., United States Magistrate Judge, pursuant to District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt's Order referring this matter for a report and recommendation entered December 12, 2014. (Dkt. 24.) After reviewing the parties' briefs in this matter (Dkts. 17, 22, 23), I recommend that the Commissioner's Decision be affirmed.

The Plaintiff, Mary J. Swaney, was born in 1965, has a ninth grade education, and does not have a GED. She has worked as a prep cook, a convenience store cashier, and a dietary aide. She has a number of physical and mental impairments which have caused the ALJ to restrict her to a limited range of sedentary occupations. None of those facts are in dispute.

The sole issue raised by Ms. Swaney is whether at Step 5 there exists a significant number of jobs which she could perform.

The vocational expert found that Ms. Swaney could do the following occupations which exist in the following numbers in Indiana:

(1) polishing machine operator - 350 positions;
(2) sorting machine operator - 200 positions;
(3) wire insulator - 50 positions;
(4) rotor assembler - 75 positions;
(5) frame assembler - 60 positions;
(6) sprayer assembler - 45 positions.

(R. 60-61.)

Ms. Swaney argues that at Step 5 the Commissioner has the burden of proving the existence of work which exists in the national economy and that the facts do not support that conclusion in this case.

The Social Security Act defines work which exists in the national economy as "work which exists in significant numbers either in the region where such individual lives or in several regions of the country." 42 U.S.C. ยง 423(d)(2)(A). The Commissioner's regulations also state that the Social Security Administration considers "that work exists in the national economy when it exists in significant numbers ...


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