Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Burton v. Saul

United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma

December 27, 2019

DEANNA BURTON, Plaintiff,
v.
ANDREW M. SAUL, Commissioner of the Social Security Administration, Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          SHON T. ERWIN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff 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 applications for benefits 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. § 636(c).

         The 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 AFFIRMS the Commissioner's decision.

         I. PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         Initially and on reconsideration, the Social Security Administration denied Plaintiff's applications for benefits. Following two administrative hearings, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) issued an unfavorable decision. (TR. 12-26). The Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review. (TR. 1-3). Thus, the decision of the ALJ became the final decision of the Commissioner.

         II. THE ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION

         The ALJ 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. § 404.1520 416.920. At step one, the ALJ determined that Plaintiff had not engaged in substantial gainful activity since January 28, 2016, her alleged onset date. (TR. 14). At step two, the ALJ determined that Ms. Burton had the following severe impairments: seizure disorder; headaches; and depression. (TR. 14). At step three, the ALJ 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. 18).

         At step four, the ALJ concluded that Ms. Burton could not perform her past relevant work, but retained the residual functional capacity (RFC) to:

[P]erform a restricted range of light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) and 20 CFR 416.967(b) and with nonexertional limitations. The claimant can sit for no more than 2 hours at a time, stand for no more than 1 hour at a time, walk for no more than 1 hour at a time; can sit no more than 6 hours in an 8 hour workday, can stand no more than 3 hours in an 8 hour workday, can walk no more than 2 hours in an 8 hour workday; can do frequent reaching, handling and fingering, but no more than occasional overhead reaching, pushing, pulling and use of foot controls; no ladders, ropes or scaffolds[;] occasional climbing ramps or stairs, stooping, balancing, crouching, crawling or kneeling[;] no unprotected heights, moving mechanical parts or vehicle operation; occasional exposure to humidity, wetness, extreme temperatures, vibrations or respiratory irritants. The claimant can perform simple, routine, repetitive tasks with no strict production requirements, no public contact, and no more than occasional contact with supervisors and co-workers.

(TR. 20-21, 24).

         At step five, the ALJ presented the RFC limitations to a vocational expert (VE) to determine whether there were other jobs in the national economy that Plaintiff could perform. (TR. 40-41). Given the limitations, the VE identified three jobs from the Dictionary of Occupational Titles (DOT). (TR. 41-42). The ALJ adopted the VE's testimony and concluded that Ms. Burton was not disabled at step five. (TR. 26).

         III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         This 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). Under the “substantial evidence” standard, a court looks to an existing administrative record and asks whether it contains “sufficien[t] evidence” to support the agency's factual determinations. Biestek v. Berryhill, 139 S.Ct. 1148, 1154 (2019). “Substantial evidence … is more than a mere scintilla … and means only-such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion.” Biestek v. Berryhill, 139 S.Ct. at 1154 (internal citations and quotation marks omitted).

         While the court considers whether the ALJ 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).

         IV. ISSUES PRESENTED

         On appeal, Ms. Burton alleges the ALJ: (1) failed to include limitations related to her migraine headaches in the RFC and (2) erred at step five. (ECF No. 14:3-13).

         V. NO ERROR IN THE CONSIDERATION ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.