United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division
OPINION AND ORDER
S. VAN BOKKELEN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
John B. seeks judicial review of the Social Security
Commissioner's decision denying him disability benefits
and asks this Court to remand the case. For the reasons
below, this Court affirms the Administrative Law Judge's
Overview of the Case
alleges that he became disabled on July 31, 1996. (R. at 15.)
According to him, he suffers from obesity, Asperger's,
bipolar disorder, borderline intellectual functioning, and
impulse control disorder. (R. at 18.) Plaintiff worked
regularly at an industrial bakery between December 2016 and
February 2017. (R. at 23.) While the ALJ found that
Plaintiff's work experience did not constitute
substantial gainful employment, (R. at 17) she concluded that
Plaintiff could perform work as a dishwasher, cleaner, or an
order picker. (R. at 24.) Therefore, the ALJ denied benefits.
(R. at 25.) This decision became final when the Appeals
Council denied Plaintiff's request for review. (R. at 1.)
Standard of Review
Court has authority to review the Commissioner's decision
under 42 U.S.C. § 405(g). The Court will ensure that the
ALJ built an “accurate and logical bridge” from
evidence to conclusion. Thomas v. Colvin, 745 F.3d
802, 806 (7th Cir. 2014). This requires the ALJ to
“confront the [plaintiff's] evidence” and
“explain why it was rejected.” Thomas v.
Colvin, 826 F.3d 953, 961 (7th Cir. 2016). The Court
will uphold decisions that apply the correct legal standard
and are supported by substantial evidence. Briscoe ex
rel. Taylor v. Barnhart, 425 F.3d 345, 351 (7th Cir.
2005). Evidence is substantial if “a reasonable mind
might accept [it] as adequate to support [the ALJ's]
conclusion.” Richardson v. Perales, 402 U.S.
389, 401 (1971).
Commissioner follows a five-step inquiry in evaluating claims
for disability benefits under the Social Security Act:
(1) whether the claimant is currently employed; (2) whether
the claimant has a severe impairment; (3) whether the
claimant's impairment is one that the Commissioner
considers conclusively disabling; (4) if the claimant does
not have a conclusively disabling impairment, whether he can
perform his past relevant work; and (5) whether the claimant
is capable of performing any work in the national economy.
Kastner v. Astrue, 697 F.3d 642, 646 (7th Cir.
claimant bears the burden of proof at every step except step
five. Clifford v. Apfel, 227 F.3d 863, 868 (7th Cir.
argues that the ALJ erred by: (1) not incorporating
limitations from all medically determinable impairments into
the Residual Functional Capacity (“RFC”); (2)
overemphasizing Plaintiff's daily and part-time work
activities; and (3) relying at Step 5 (of the
Commissioner's inquiry) on a vocational expert
(“VE”) who lacked proper foundation for a
substantial number of remaining jobs. (Pl. Br. at 10-15.)
Plaintiff's claims do not present cause for remand.
Therefore, this Court affirms the ALJ's decision.
The ALJ Included Plaintiff's Mental ...