United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
T. ERWIN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) for
judicial review of the final decision of the Commissioner of
the Social Security Administration denying Plaintiff's
application for supplemental security income under the Social
Security Act. The Commissioner has answered and filed a
transcript of the administrative record (hereinafter TR.___).
The parties have consented to jurisdiction over this matter
by a United States Magistrate Judge pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
parties have briefed their positions, and the matter is now
at issue. Based on the Court's review of the record and
the issues presented, the Court REVERSES AND
REMANDS the Commissioner's decision.
Gorelick received supplemental security income based on her
disability as a child. (TR. 20). Following Plaintiff's
eighteenth birthday, the Social Security Administration
determined that Ms. Gorelick was no longer disabled based on
a redetermination of disability. (TR. 23). Following an
administrative hearing, an Administrative Law Judge (AU)
issued an unfavorable decision on the redetermination. (TR.
20-30). The Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request
for review. (TR. 1-3). Thus, the decision of the AU became
the final decision of the Commissioner.
THE ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION
followed the five-step sequential evaluation process required
by agency regulations. See Fischer-Ross v. Barnhart,
431 F.3d 729, 731 (10th Cir. 2005); 20 C.F.R. §416.920.
The AU bypassed step one, as it is not used for
re-determining disability when a claimant attains age
eighteen. (TR. 21); 20 C.F.R. §416.987(b). At step two,
the AU determined Ms. Gorelick had severe impairments
involving cerebral palsy and mild scoliosis. (TR. 23). At
step three, the AU found that Plaintiff's impairments did
not meet or medically equal any of the presumptively
disabling impairments listed at 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart
P, Appendix 1 (TR. 23).
four, the AU concluded that although Ms. Gorelick had no past
relevant work, she retained the residual functional capacity
[P]erform sedentary work as defined in 20 CFR 416.967(a) she
can lift, carry, push and pull 20 pounds occasionally and 10
pounds frequently. She can stand and/or walk for a total of 2
hours in an 8-hour workday. She can never climb ladders,
ropes, or scaffolds. She can never balance. She can
frequently climb stairs. She must avoid unprotected heights.
23, 28). At step five, the AU presented several limitations
to a vocational expert (VE) to determine whether there were
other jobs in the national economy that Plaintiff could
perform with her RFC. (TR. 70-75). Given the limitations, the
VE identified three jobs from the Dictionary of Occupational
Titles (DOT). (TR. 75-76). The AU adopted the testimony of
the VE and concluded that Ms. Gorelick was not disabled based
on her ability to perform the identified jobs. (TR. 29).
appeal, Plaintiff alleges errors at steps three and four, as
well as in the AU's evaluation of Ms. Gorelick's
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Court reviews the Commissioner's final "decision to
determin[e] whether the factual findings are supported by
substantial evidence in the record and whether the correct
legal standards were applied." Wilson v.
Astrue, 602 F.3d 1136, 1140 (10th Cir. 2010).
"Substantial evidence is such relevant evidence as a
reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a
conclusion." Id. (quotation omitted).
the court considers whether the AU followed the applicable
rules of law in weighing particular types of evidence in
disability cases, the court will "neither reweigh the
evidence nor substitute [its] judgment for that of the
agency." Vigil v. Colvin, 805 F.3d 1199, 1201
(10th Cir. 2015) (internal quotation marks omitted).