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Meyers v. Berryhill

United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division

August 27, 2018

MICHELLE MEYER, Plaintiff,
v.
NANCY A. BERRYHILL, Deputy Commissioner for Operations, Social Security Administration, Defendant.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          JOHN E. MARTIN MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on a Complaint [DE 1], filed by Plaintiff Michelle Meyer on July 3, 2017, and Plaintiff's Brief in Support of Her Motion to Reverse the Decision of the Commissioner of Social Security [DE 18], filed February 23, 2018. Plaintiff requests that the decision of the Administrative Law Judge be reversed and remanded for further proceedings. On March 23, 2018, the Commissioner filed a response, and on April 19, 2018, Plaintiff filed a reply.

         I. Background

         On May 31, 2013, Plaintiff filed an application for benefits alleging that she became disabled on October 31, 2002. Plaintiff's application was denied initially and upon reconsideration. On April 18, 2016, Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) William E. Sampson held a hearing at which Plaintiff, with an attorney, and a vocational expert (“VE”) testified. On July 7, 2016, the ALJ issued a decision finding that Plaintiff was not disabled.

         The ALJ made the following findings under the required five-step analysis:

1. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since May 31, 2013, the application date.
2. The claimant has severe impairments: degenerative disc disease, seizure disorder, blood clotting disorder, depression, anxiety, and ADHD.
3. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of impairments that meet or medically equal the severity of one the listed impairments in 20 CFR 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1.
4. The claimant had the residual functional capacity to perform light work, except the claimant can lift and carry twenty pounds occasionally and ten pounds frequently. The claimant can sit for six hours and stand and/or walk for six hours for a total of eight hours in a workday, with normal breaks. The claimant can occasionally climb stairs and ramps, but cannot climb ladders, ropes, or scaffolds. The claimant can occasionally balance, stoop, crouch, kneel, and crawl. The claimant must avoid concentrated exposure to extreme cold and hazards such as dangerous moving machinery and unprotected heights. The claimant is limited to frequent, but not constant, reaching with her bilateral upper extremities and frequent, but not constant, handling and fingering with her dominant right upper extremity. The claimant is limited to simple, routine, repetitive tasks and cannot perform production pace work.
5. The claimant has no past relevant work.
6. The claimant was a younger individual age 18-49, on the date the application was filed.
7. The claimant has at least a high school education and is able to communicate in English.
8. Transferability of job skills is not an issue in this case because the claimant's past relevant work is unskilled.
9. Considering the claimant's age, education, work experience, and residual functional capacity, there are jobs that exist in significant numbers in the national ...

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