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Moore v. Berryhill

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

February 7, 2019

CARRIE ANNE MOORE, 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 Carrie Anne Moore on February 2, 2018, and Plaintiff's Brief in Support of Her Motion to Reverse the Decision of the Commissioner of Social Security [DE 16], filed August 16, 2018. Plaintiff requests that the decision of the Administrative Law Judge be reversed and remanded for an award of benefits or, in the alternative, for further proceedings. On September 6, 2018, the Commissioner filed a response, and on October 12, 2018, Plaintiff filed a reply.

         I. Background

         On October 23, 2014, Plaintiff filed applications for benefits alleging that she became disabled on October 2, 2014. Plaintiff's applications were denied initially and upon reconsideration. On February 6, 2017, Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) Kevin Vodak held a hearing at which Plaintiff and a vocational expert (“VE”) testified. Plaintiff was represented by an attorney at the hearing. On April 28, 2017, 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 meets the insured status requirements of the Social Security Act through December 31, 2019.
2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since October 2, 2014, the alleged onset date.
3. The claimant has the following severe impairments: borderline personality disorder, bipolar I disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and gambling disorder.
4. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of impairments that meets or medically equals the severity of one the listed impairments in 20 CFR 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1.
5. The claimant has the residual functional capacity to perform a full range of work at all exertional levels but with the following nonexertional limitations: the claimant is limited to understanding, remembering, and carrying out simple, routine, and repetitive tasks, She can frequently interact with supervisors and coworkers, and occasionally interact with the public. The claimant is able to engage in no more than occasional decision-making and be exposed to no more than occasional changes in her job setting.
6. The claimant is unable to perform any past relevant work.
7. The claimant was 45 years old, which is defined as a younger individual age 18-49, on the alleged disability onset date.
8. The claimant has at least a high school education and is able to communicate in English.
9. Transferability of job skills is not material to the determination of disability because using the Medical-Vocational Rules as a framework supports a finding that the claimant is “not disabled, ” ...

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