The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Jacqueline Chooljian United States Magistrate Judge
On June 25, 2012, plaintiff Felipe Avila-Diaz ("plaintiff") filed a Complaint seeking review of the Commissioner of Social Security's denial of plaintiff's application for benefits. The parties have consented to proceed before a United States Magistrate Judge.
This matter is before the Court on the parties' cross motions for summary judgment, respectively ("Plaintiff's Motion") and ("Defendant's Motion"). The Court has taken both motions under submission without oral argument. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 78; L.R. 7-15; June 28, 2012 Case Management Order ¶ 5.
Based on the record as a whole and the applicable law, the decision of the Commissioner is AFFIRMED. The findings of the Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") are supported by substantial evidence and are free from material error.*fn1
II. BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION
On March 27, 2009, plaintiff filed an application for Disability Insurance Benefits. (Administrative Record ("AR") 122). Plaintiff asserted that he became disabled on October 13, 2008, due to depression, nervousness, distrust of people, ability easily to be stressed, overwhelmed and irritable, diabetes which affects vision, high blood pressure, and sleep apnea. (AR 142). The ALJ examined the medical record and heard testimony from plaintiff (who was represented by counsel) and a vocational expert on November 19, 2010. (AR 37-64).
On March 24, 2011, the ALJ determined that plaintiff was not disabled through the date of the decision. (AR 16-24). Specifically, the ALJ found:
(1) plaintiff suffered from the following severe impairments: depressive disorder (not otherwise specified ("NOS")), sleep apnea, diabetes mellitus-type 2, hypertension and obesity (AR 18); (2) plaintiff's impairments, considered singly or in combination, did not meet or medically equal a listed impairment (AR 19); (3) plaintiff retained the residual functional capacity to perform a full range of work at all exertional levels with certain non-exertional limitations (AR 20); *fn2 (4) plaintiff could perform his past relevant work as a warehouse worker (AR 23); and (5) plaintiff's allegations regarding his limitations were not credible to the extent they were inconsistent with the ALJ's residual functional capacity assessment (AR 20).
The Appeals Council denied plaintiff's application for review. (AR 2).
III. APPLICABLE LEGAL STANDARDS
A. Sequential Evaluation Process
To qualify for disability benefits, a claimant must show that the claimant is unable "to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months." Molina v. Astrue, 674 F.3d 1104, 1110 (9th Cir. 2012) (quoting 42 U.S.C. § 423(d)(1)(A)) (internal quotation marks omitted). The impairment must render the claimant incapable of performing the work claimant previously performed and incapable of performing any other ...