Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Craine v. Berryhill

United States District Court, C.D. California, Eastern Division

April 11, 2017

CLAYTON C. CRAINE, Plaintiff,
v.
NANCY BERRYHILL, ACTING COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION, Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          PAUL L. ABRAMS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         I.

         PROCEEDINGS

         Plaintiff filed this action on November 13, 2015, seeking review of the Commissioner's[1]denial of his application for Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”) payments. The parties filed Consents to proceed before the undersigned Magistrate Judge on December 9, 2015, and December 11, 2015. Pursuant to the Court's Order, the parties filed a Joint Stipulation (alternatively “JS”) on April 3, 2017, that addresses their positions concerning the disputed issues in the case. The Court has taken the Joint Stipulation under submission without oral argument.

         II.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff was born on August 24, 1963. [Administrative Record (“AR”) at 127, 337.] He has past relevant work experience as a delivery driver-courier and a warehouse worker. [AR at 336, 369.]

         On April 25, 2007, plaintiff protectively filed an application for SSI payments, alleging that he has been unable to work since April 20, 2007. [AR at 127.] After his application was denied initially and upon reconsideration, and after a hearing, an unfavorable decision was issued on May 4, 2009. [AR at 435-42.] Plaintiff filed a complaint in this Court in case number CV 09-8851-PLA, and on January 3, 2011, the Court remanded the matter for further proceedings. [AR at 447-57.] On July 11, 2011, December 20, 2011, and March 28, 2013, three hearings were held after remand by a different ALJ, at each of which plaintiff appeared represented by an attorney and testified on his own behalf. [AR at 349-80, 381-96, 397-400.] A vocational expert (“VE”) also testified at the March 28, 2013, hearing. [AR at 369, 375-78, 380.] On April 26, 2013, the ALJ issued a decision concluding that plaintiff was not under a disability since April 20, 2007, the date the application was filed. [AR at 326-38.] Plaintiff requested review of the ALJ's decision by the Appeals Council, and when the Appeals Council denied plaintiff's request for review on September 18, 2015 [AR at 312-17], the ALJ's decision became the final decision of the Commissioner. See Sam v. Astrue, 550 F.3d 808, 810 (9th Cir. 2008) (per curiam) (citations omitted). This action followed.

         III.

         STANDARD OF REVIEW

         Pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), this Court has authority to review the Commissioner's decision to deny benefits. The decision will be disturbed only if it is not supported by substantial evidence or if it is based upon the application of improper legal standards. Berry v. Astrue, 622 F.3d 1228, 1231 (9th Cir. 2010) (citation omitted).

         “Substantial evidence means more than a mere scintilla but less than a preponderance; it is such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion.” Carmickle v. Comm'r, Soc. Sec. Admin., 533 F.3d 1155, 1159 (9th Cir. 2008) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted); Reddick v. Chater, 157 F.3d 715, 720 (9th Cir. 1998) (same). When determining whether substantial evidence exists to support the Commissioner's decision, the Court examines the administrative record as a whole, considering adverse as well as supporting evidence. Mayes v. Massanari, 276 F.3d 453, 459 (9th Cir. 2001) (citation omitted); see Ryan v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 528 F.3d 1194, 1198 (9th Cir. 2008) (“[A] reviewing court must consider the entire record as a whole and may not affirm simply by isolating a specific quantum of supporting evidence.”) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted). “Where evidence is susceptible to more than one rational interpretation, the ALJ's decision should be upheld.” Ryan, 528 F.3d at 1198 (citation and internal quotation marks omitted); see Robbins v. Soc. Sec. Admin., 466 F.3d 880, 882 (9th Cir. 2006) (“If the evidence can support either affirming or reversing the ALJ's conclusion, [the reviewing court] may not substitute [its] judgment for that of the ALJ.”) (citation omitted).

         IV.

         THE EVALUATION OF DISABILITY

         Persons are “disabled” for purposes of receiving Social Security benefits if they are unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity owing to a physical or mental impairment that is expected to result in death or which has lasted or is expected to last for a continuous period of at least twelve months. 42 U.S.C. § 423(d)(1)(A); Drouin v. Sullivan, 966 F.2d 1255, 1257 (9th Cir. 1992).

         A.

         THE FIVE-STEP ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.