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Chou Yang v. Michael J. Astrue

June 6, 2012

CHOU YANG, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MICHAEL J. ASTRUE, COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gregory G. Hollows United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER

Plaintiff seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security ("Commissioner") denying her application for Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") under Title XVI of the Social Security Act ("Act"). For the reasons that follow, Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment is DENIED, the Commissioner's Cross Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED, and the Clerk is directed to enter judgment for the Commissioner.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff, born July 15, 1966, applied on December 31, 2007 for Supplemental Security Income disability benefits, alleging disability beginning August 22, 2004. (Tr. at 96-116.) Plaintiff alleged she was unable to work due to pain from spine, shoulder, and back injuries. In a later disability report, plaintiff also reported problems with depression and high blood pressure. (Tr. at 128.) In a decision dated July 23, 2010, ALJ L. Kalei Fong determined that plaintiff was not disabled. (Tr. at 8-15.) The ALJ made the following findings (citations to CFR omitted):*fn1

1. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since December 31, 2007, the application date.

2. The claimant has the following severe impairments: left shoulder clavicular fracture and left hip pain and tenderness.

3. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of impairments that meets or medically equals one of the listed impairments in 20 CFR Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1.

4. After careful consideration of the entire record, the undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual functional capacity to perform medium work as defined in 20 CFR 416.967(c) except occasional lifting overhead with left upper extremity.

5. The claimant is capable of performing past relevant work as a care provider. This work does not require the performance of work-related activities precluded by the claimant's residual functional capacity.

6. The claimant has not been under a disability, as defined in the Social Security Act, since December 31, 2007, the date the application was filed.

(Tr. at 10-14.)

ISSUES PRESENTED

Plaintiff has raised the following issues: A. Whether the ALJ Committed Error at Step Two by Finding Plaintiff's Depression Was Nonsevere; B. Whether the ALJ Properly Assessed Plaintiff's Residual Functional Capacity; C. Whether the ALJ Improperly Discredited Plaintiff's Testimony; and ...


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