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Kaedean Doppelmayr v. Michael J. Astrue

February 11, 2013

KAEDEAN DOPPELMAYR, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MICHAEL J. ASTRUE, COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Allison Claire United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Plaintiff seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security ("Commissioner") denying her applications for Disability Income Benefits ("DIB") and for Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") under Titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act ("the Act"). The parties' cross motions for summary judgment are before the court. For the reasons discussed below, the undersigned recommends plaintiff's motion be granted and the Commissioner's motion be denied.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff protectively filed applications for DIB and SSI on August 9, 2006, alleging disability beginning February 17, 2005. Administrative Record ("AR") 83-85, 94-97.

Plaintiff's applications were initially denied on November 7, 2008, and upon reconsideration on January 15, 2009. AR 34, 40. A hearing was held on April 23, 2009, at which plaintiff appeared without counsel. The hearing was continued to allow plaintiff to obtain counsel. AR 730-33. On May 19, 2010, a hearing was held before administrative law judge (the "ALJ") L. Kalei Fong. AR734-44. Plaintiff was not represented by counsel at the hearing, at which she testified. Id.

In a decision dated August 20, 2010, the ALJ determined that plaintiff was not disabled under sections 216(i), 223(d) and 1614(a)(3)(A) of the Act.*fn1 AR 9-24. The ALJ made the following findings (citations to 20 C.F.R. omitted):

1. The claimant meets the insured status requirements of the Social Security Act through December 31, 2010.

2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since February 17, 2005, the alleged onset date.

3. The claimant has had the following severe impairments: fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes mellitus II and depression. . . .

4. 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. . . .

5. After careful consideration of the entire record, the undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual functional capacity to perform light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) and 416.967(b) in that the claimant can lift and carry 20 pounds occasionally and 10 pounds frequently; can stand and walk for six hours of an eight hour day; can sit six hours of an eight hour day; and can push and pull without limitations. The claimant can occasionally bend, crawl, crouch, and stoop; can occasionally reach, handle, finger and feel and grasp. She has a moderately impaired ability to respond to stress and pressures associated with day-to-day work activity and to relate and interact with supervisors, co-workers and the public. Her ability to respond appropriately to work situations is mildly impaired. . . .

6. The claimant is unable to perform any past relevant work. . . .

7. The claimant was born [in] 1969 and was 35 years old, which is defined as a younger individual age 18-49, on the ...


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