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Daniel Dickinson v. Carolyn W. Colvin

April 15, 2013

DANIEL DICKINSON, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN,*FN1 ACTING COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Oswald Parada United States Magistrate Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION; ORDER

The Court now rules as follows with respect to the disputed issues listed in*fn2 the Joint Stipulation ("JS").*fn3

I.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

On April 10, 2009, Daniel David Dickinson ("Plaintiff") applied for a period of disability and disability insurance benefits. (Administrative Record ("AR") at 20).) He also filed an application for Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") benefits. (Id.) The claims were denied initially on July 20, 2009, and upon reconsideration on January 14, 2010. Plaintiff filed a request for hearing that was held on March 30, 2011. (Id.) Samuel Landau, M.D., a medical expert, and Sandra M. Fioretti, a vocational expert ("VE"), appeared and testified at the hearing. (Id.)

On April 22, 2011, the ALJ issued a decision finding that Plaintiff was not disabled within the meaning of the Social Security Act. (Id. at 22-28.)

Plaintiff appealed the ALJ's decision to the Appeals Council, which denied review on February 28, 2012. (Id. at 1-5.) Thus, the ALJ's decision is the Commissioner's final decision in this matter.

On June 7, 2012, Plaintiff filed a Complaint seeking review in this Court of the Commissioner's decision denying Social Security benefits. (ECF No. 1.) On October 30, 2012, Defendant filed an Answer to the Complaint. (ECF No. 11.) On March 7, 2013, the parties filed a Joint Stipulation ("JS") identifying the disputed issues before the Court for review. (ECF No. 17.)

II.

DISPUTED ISSUES

As reflected in the Joint Stipulation, the disputed issues raised by Plaintiff as the grounds for reversal and/or remand are as follows:

(1) Whether the Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") properly evaluated the evidence from Plaintiff's treating physician;

(2) Whether the ALJ properly considered all of Plaintiff's impairments in terms of severity, listing level, or impact on Plaintiff's residual functional capacity ("RFC"); and

(3) Whether the ALJ properly evaluated Plaintiff's credibility. (JS at 3.)

III.

STANDARD OF REVIEW

Under 42 U.S.C. ยง 405(g), this Court reviews the Commissioner's decision to determine whether the Commissioner's findings are supported by substantial evidence and whether the proper legal standards were applied. DeLorme v. Sullivan, 924 F.2d 841, 846 (9th Cir. 1991). Substantial evidence means "more than a mere scintilla" but less than a preponderance. Richardson v. Perales, 402 U.S. 389, 401, 91 S. Ct. 1420, 28 L. Ed. 2d 842 (1971); Desrosiers v. Sec'y of Health & Human Servs., 846 F.2d 573, 575-76 (9th Cir. 1988). Substantial evidence is "such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion." Richardson, 402 U.S. at 401 (citation omitted). The Court must review the record as a whole and consider adverse as well as supporting evidence. Green v. Heckler, 803 ...


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