United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division
OPINION AND ORDER
E. MARTIN MAGISTRATE JUDGE
matter is before the Court on a Complaint [DE 1], filed by
Plaintiff on February 5, 2017, and Plaintiff's Brief in
Support of Reversing the Decision of the Commissioner of
Social Security [DE 19], filed on August 7, 2017. Plaintiff
requests that the decision of the Administrative Law Judge be
reversed and remanded for further proceedings. On October 12,
2017, the Commissioner filed a response, and on November 13,
2017, Plaintiff filed a reply. For the following reasons, the
Court grants Plaintiff's request for remand.
20, 2013, Plaintiff filed an application for benefits
alleging that he became disabled on May 20, 2013.
Plaintiff's application was denied initially and upon
reconsideration. On November 16, 2015, Administrative Law
Judge (“ALJ”) Howard Kauffman held a hearing at
which Plaintiff, with an attorney representative, and a
vocational expert (“VE”) testified. On December
9, 2015, the ALJ issued a decision finding that Plaintiff was
not disabled. The Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's
request for review, leaving the ALJ's decision the final
decision of the Commissioner.
made the following findings under the required five-step
1. The claimant meets the insured status requirements of the
Social Security Act through December 31, 2018.
2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful
activity since May 20, 2013, the alleged onset date.
3. The claimant has the following severe impairments: chronic
obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and morbid obesity. His
other medically-determinable impairments, including
obstructive sleep apnea, are non-severe. Other alleged
impairments, including sciatica, are not medically
4. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of
impairments that meets or medically equals the severity of
one of the listed impairments in 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart
P, Appendix 1.
5. The claimant has the residual functional capacity to
perform light work as defined in 20 C.F.R. 404.1567(b) and
461.967(b), lifting up to 20 pounds occasionally and 10
pounds frequently and standing or walking for up to 6 hours
in an 8-hour work day, except that he can never climb
ladders, ropes, or scaffolds and can only occasionally climb
ramps and stairs, balance, stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl.
6. The claimant is able to perform past relevant work as a
security guard and as a bus driver. This work does not
require the performance of work-related activities precluded
by the claimant's residual functional capacity.
7. The claimant has not been under a disability from May 20,
2013, through the date of the decision.
parties filed forms of consent to have this case assigned to
a United States Magistrate Judge to conduct all further
proceedings and to order the entry of a final judgment in
this Court has jurisdiction to decide this case pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § ...