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.

Lambert v. Saul

United States District Court, E.D. California

September 26, 2019

KAREN LYNETTE LAMBERT, Plaintiff,
v.
ANDREW SAUL, Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

          ORDER

          CAROLYN K. DELANEY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security (“Commissioner”) finding that her disability ended on January 1, 2015 under sections 223(f) and 1614(a)(3)(A) of the Social Security Act (“Act”). The parties have consented to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction to conduct all proceedings in the case, including the entry of final judgment. For the reasons discussed below, the court will deny plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment and grant the Commissioner’s cross-motion for summary judgment.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff, born in 1965, was found disabled beginning on June 1, 2005.[1] Administrative Transcript (“AT”) 17, 26. The January 25, 2008 decision finding plaintiff disabled stated that she had rheumatoid arthritis. AT 19. Pursuant to a continuing disability review (“CDR”), the Commissioner found that plaintiff was no longer disabled as of January 1, 2015[2], in response to which she filed a request for reconsideration. AT 115-116, 144. Plaintiff attended a hearing before a disability hearing officer on July 14, 2015 (AT 152-165), and later received a reconsideration determination that she was no longer disabled. AT 166-171. Plaintiff then requested and appeared for a hearing before an ALJ on November 18, 2016, and then again on April 18, 2017. AT 35-73, 74-104. In a decision dated August 7, 2017, the ALJ determined that plaintiff was not disabled since January 1, 2015. AT 17-27. The ALJ made the following findings (citations to 20 C.F.R. omitted):

1. The most recent favorable medical decision finding that the claimant was disabled is the determination dated January 25, 2008. This is known as the ‘comparison point decision’ or CPD.
2. At the time of the CPD, the claimant had the following medically determinable impairment: rheumatoid arthritis. This impairment was found to result in the residual functional capacity to perform sedentary work except she is unable to perform more than occasional standing or walking, use her hands to handle or her upper extremities to reach or push/pull.
3. Through the date of this decision, the claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity.
4. The medical evidence establishes that, since January 1, 2015, the claimant has had the following medically determinable impairments: rheumatoid arthritis; bilateral calcaneal spurs and right Achilles tendinopathy; and degenerative disc disease of the cervical spine and lumbar spine. These are the claimant’s current impairments.
5. Since January 1, 2015 the claimant has not had 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.
6. Medical improvement occurred on January 1, 2015.
7. The claimant’s medical improvement is related to the ability to work because it resulted in an increase in the claimant’s residual functional capacity.
8. Since January 1, 2015, the claimant has continued to have a severe impairment or combination of impairments.
9. Since January 1, 2015, based on the current impairments, the claimant has had the residual functional capacity to perform light work except: only occasional stooping, kneeling, crouching, and climbing; avoid hazards such as unprotected heights and dangerous moving machinery; must avoid cold; and she is limited to only occasional handling and fingering.
10. Since January 1, 2015, the claimant has been unable to perform past relevant work.
11. On January 1, 2015, the claimant was a younger individual 18-49.
12. The claimant has at least a high-school education and is able to communicate in English.
13. Since January 1, 2015, 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.
14. Since January 1, 2015, considering the claimant’s age, education, work experience, and residual functional capacity based on the current impairments, the claimant has been able to perform a significant number of jobs in the national economy.
15. The claimant’s disability ended on January 1, 2015, and the claimant has not become disabled again since that date.

AT 19-27.

         On June 18, 2018, the Appeals Council denied plaintiff’s request for review on the grounds that the new medical evidence submitted by plaintiff’s counsel did not provide a basis for changing the ALJ’s decision. AT 1-5.

         ISSUES ...


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.