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Garcia v. Astrue

United States District Court, Ninth Circuit

April 26, 2013

PAMELA JO GARCIA, Plaintiff,
v.
MICHAEL J. ASTRUE, Commissioner of Social Security Administration, Defendant.

ORDER

WILLIAM Q. HAYES, District Judge.

The matter before the Court is the Report and Recommendation (ECF No. 18), issued by United States Magistrate Judge Barbara L. Major, which recommends that the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Plaintiff (ECF No. 12) be granted and the Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendant (ECF No. 16) be denied.

BACKGROUND

On November 21, 2008, Plaintiff filed an application for disability insurance benefits, alleging disability beginning on January 25, 2008. (Administrative Record ("AR") 14; ECF No. 8-2 at 15). Plaintiff's claim was denied at the initial level and upon reconsideration. Id. On June 18, 2010, a hearing was held before an administrative law judge ("ALJ"). Id. On July 9, 2010, the ALJ issued a written decision finding that Plaintiff had severe impairments of subjective memory impairment and osteoporosis, but Plaintiff was not disabled, as defined in the Social Security Act, from January 25, 2008 through the date of the ALJ's decision. (AR 14-23; ECF No. 8-2 at 15-24). On February 24, 2012, the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review and the ALJ's decision became the final decision of the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration ("Commissioner"). (AR 1; ECF No. 8-2 at 2).

On April 23, 2012, Plaintiff initiated this action against the Commissioner, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g). (ECF No. 1). On August 15, 2012, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Summary Judgment, asking the Court to reverse the Commissioner's final decision and to remand the case for an award of benefits or further proceedings. (ECF No. 12). On April 20, 2012, Defendant filed a Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment. (ECF No. 16).

On March 13, 2013, the Magistrate Judge issued the Report and Recommendation recommending that this Court grant Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment, deny Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment, reverse the decision of the Commissioner and remand for calculation of benefits. (ECF No. 18). The Magistrate Judge stated that "the ALJ's reasons for rejecting the functional capacity assessment of Plaintiff's treating physician and Plaintiff's subjective symptom testimony are not based on substantial evidence and are legally insufficient." Id. at 28. The Magistrate Judge stated that "there are no outstanding issues that must be resolved before a determination of disability can be made, and it is clear from the record that the ALJ would be required to find the claimant disabled were Plaintiff's evidence credited." Id. (citations omitted). The Report and Recommendation concludes:

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that any written objections to this Report and Recommendation must be filed with the Court and served on all parties no later than April 3, 2013.... The parties are advised that failure to file objections within the specified time may waive the right to raise those objections on appeal of the Court's order.

Id. (citing Turner v. Duncan, 158 F.3d 449, 455 (9th Cir. 1998); Martinez v. Ylst, 951 F.2d 1153, 1157 (9th Cir. 1991)).

The docket reflects that no objections to the Report and Recommendation have been filed.

REVIEW OF THE REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

The duties of the district court in connection with a report and recommendation of a magistrate judge are set forth in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72(b) and 28 U.S.C. § 636(b). The district judge must "make a de novo determination of those portions of the report... to which objection is made, " and "may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate." 28 U.S.C. § 636(b). The district court need not review de novo those portions of a Report and Recommendation to which neither party objects. See Wang v. Masaitis, 416 F.3d 992, 1000 n.13 (9th Cir. 2005); U.S. v. Reyna-Tapia, 328 F.3d 1114, 1121 (9th Cir. 2003) ("Neither the Constitution nor the [Federal Magistrates Act] requires a district judge to review, de novo, findings and recommendations that the parties themselves accept as correct.") (en banc).

The Court has reviewed the Report and Recommendation, the administrative record, and the submissions of the parties. The Court finds that the Magistrate Judge correctly recommended that Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment be granted, Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment be denied, the Commissioner's final decision be reversed and this case be remanded for calculation of benefits.

CONCLUSION

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that: (1) the Report and Recommendation (ECF No. 18) is ADOPTED in its entirety; (2) Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 12) is GRANTED; and (3) Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 16) is DENIED. The Court REVERSES the decision of the Commissioner and REMANDS this case to the Social Security Administration for calculation of benefits.


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