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Cervantes v. Colvin

United States District Court, E.D. California

September 2, 2014

SANTOS TONY CERVANTES, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

ORDER

CAROLYN K. DELANEY, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security ("Commissioner") denying applications for Disability Income Benefits ("DIB") and Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") under Titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act ("Act"), respectively. For the reasons discussed below, the court will grant plaintiff's motion for summary judgment, deny the Commissioner's cross-motion for summary judgment, and remand this matter under sentence four of 42 U.S.C. ยง 405(g).

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff, born June 20, 1963, applied on July 26, 2010 for DIB and SSI, alleging disability beginning June 1, 2010. Administrative Transcript ("AT") 223-33. Plaintiff alleged he was unable to work due to degenerative disc disease in his back, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, hepatitis C, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, personality disorder and arthritis. AT 92, 105, 243. In a decision dated June 15, 2012, the ALJ determined that plaintiff was not disabled.[1] AT 49. 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, 2011.
2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since June 1, 2010, the alleged onset date.
3. The claimant has the following severe impairments: disorder of the back; hypertension; schizophrenia; and bipolar disorder.
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 sedentary work... specifically as follows: the claimant can lift and/or carry 10 pounds occasionally and less than 10 pounds frequently; he can stand and/or walk for two hours out of an eight-hour workday with regular breaks; he can sit for six hours out of an eight-hour workday with regular breaks; he requires a sit/stand option provided he will not be off task more than 10% of the work period; he can never climb ladders, ropes, or scaffolds; he can occasionally climb ramps and stairs; he can occasionally stoop, crouch, kneel, and crawl; he is limited to jobs that can be performed while using a hand held assistive device required only for uneven terrain or prolonged ambulation; he must avoid all use of hazardous machinery; he must avoid exposure to unprotected heights; he is limited to simple, as defined in the DOT as SVP levels 1 and 2, routine and repetitive tasks; he is limited to low stress work with only occasional decision making and only occasional changes in the work setting with no strict production quotas emphasis on a per shift rather than per hour basis; he can only occasionally interact with the co-workers, supervisors, and the general public.
6. The claimant is unable to perform any past relevant work.
7. The claimant was born on June 20, 1963 and was 46 years old, which is defined as a younger individual age 45-49, on the alleged disability onset date.
8. The claimant has limited education and is able to communicate in English.
9. Transferability of job skills is not material to the determination of disability because using the Medical-Vocational Rules as a framework supports a finding that the claimant is "not disabled, " whether or not the claimant has transferable job skills.
10. Considering the claimant's age, education, work experience, and residual functional capacity, there are jobs that exist in significant numbers in the ...

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