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Oren Hamlett v. Carolyn W. Colvin

March 29, 2013

OREN HAMLETT, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN,*FN1 ACTING COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, DEFENDANT.



ORDER

Plaintiff seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security ("Commissioner") denying her applications for a period of disability and Disability Insurance Benefits ("DIB") and for Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") under Titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act. The parties' cross-motions for summary judgment are pending. For the reasons discussed below, the court grants plaintiff's motion and remands the matter for further proceedings.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff applied for a period of disability, DIB, and SSI benefits on July 9, 2009, alleging that he had been disabled since April 20, 2009. Administrative Record ("AR") 109-119. Plaintiff's applications were initially denied on October 21, 2009, and upon reconsideration on April 5, 2010. Id. at 43-47, 50-54. On April 8, 2011, a hearing was held before administrative law judge ("ALJ") L. Kalei Fong. Id. at 24-38. Plaintiff was represented by counsel at the hearing, at which he testified. Id.

On December 30, 2010, the ALJ issued a decision finding that plaintiff was not disabled under sections 216(I), 223(d), and 1614(a)(3)(A) of the act.*fn2 Id. at 12-19. The ALJ made the

following specific findings:

1. The claimant meets the insured status requirement of the Social Security Act through December 31, 2013.

2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since April 20, 2009, the alleged onset date (20 CFR 404.1571 et seq., and 416.971 et seq.).

3. The claimant has the following severe impairments: chronic lower back pain (20 CFR 404.1520(c) and 416.920(c)). ...

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 (20 CFR 404.1520(d), 404.1525, 404.1526, 416.920(d), 416.925 and 416.926). ...

5. After careful consideration of the entire record, the undersigned finds that the claimant has the residual functional capacity to perform the fully range of light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) and 416.967(b) (Exhibits 4F, 9F and 15F). ...

6. The claimant is unable to perform any past relevant work (20 CFR 404.1565 and 416.965). ...

7. The claimant was born [in] 1959 and was 50 years old, which is defined as an individual closely approaching advanced age, on the alleged disability onset date

(20 CFR 404.1563 and 416.963).

8. The claimant has a limited education and is able to communicate in English

(20 CFR 404.1564 and 416.964).

9. Transferability of job skills is not material to the determination of disability because applying the Medical-Vocational Rules directly supports a finding of "non disabled," whether or not the claimant has transferable job skills (See SSR 82-41 and 20 CFR Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 2).

10. Considering the claimant's age, education, work experience, and residual functional capacity, there are jobs that exist in significant numbers in the national economy that the claimant can perform (20 ...


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