United States District Court, C.D. California
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
G ROSENBERG United States Magistrate Judge
filed this action on July 6, 2016. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(c), the parties consented to proceed before the
magistrate judge. (Dkt. Nos. 11, 15.) On April 4, 2017, the
parties filed a Joint Stipulation that addressed the disputed
issues. The court has taken the matter under submission
without oral argument.
reviewed the entire file, the court reverses the decision of
the Commissioner and remands for further proceedings
consistent with this opinion.
18, 2012, Blackmon filed an application for supplemental
security income benefits, alleging an onset date of April 12,
2012. Administrative Record (“AR”) 13. The
application was denied initially and on reconsideration. AR
13, 62, 87. Blackmon requested a hearing before an
Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”). On October 1,
2014, the ALJ conducted a hearing at which Blackmon and a
vocational expert testified. AR 28-61. On January 23, 2015,
the ALJ issued a decision denying benefits. AR 10-22. On May
11, 2016, the Appeals Council denied the request for review.
AR 1-3. This action followed.
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. Moncada v. Chater, 60
F.3d 521, 523 (9th Cir. 1995) (per curiam); Drouin v.
Sullivan, 966 F.2d 1255, 1257 (9th Cir. 1992).
evidence” means “more than a mere scintilla but
less than a preponderance - it is such relevant evidence that
a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support the
conclusion.” Moncada, 60 F.3d at 523. In
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. Drouin, 966 F.2d at 1257.
When the evidence is susceptible to more than one rational
interpretation, the court must defer to the
Commissioner's decision. Moncada, 60 F.3d at
person qualifies as disabled, and thereby eligible for such
benefits, “only if his physical or mental impairment or
impairments are of such severity that he is not only unable
to do his previous work but cannot, considering his age,
education, and work experience, engage in any other kind of
substantial gainful work which exists in the national
economy.” Barnhart v. ...