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Simpson v. Colvin

United States District Court, D. Oregon

October 16, 2014

WANDA SIMPSON, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Commissioner, Social Security Administration, Defendant.

MERRILL SCHNEIDER, Schneider Kerr & Gibney Law Offices, Portland, OR, Attorneys for Plaintiff.

S. AMANDA MARSHALL, United States Attorney, RONALD K. SILVER, Assistant United States Attorney, Portland, OR, DAVID MORADO, Regional Chief Counsel, GERALD J. HILL, Special Assistant United States Attorney, Social Security Administration, Seattle, WA, Attorneys for Defendants.

OPINION AND ORDER

ANNA J. BROWN, District Judge.

Plaintiff Wanda Simpson seeks judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration (SSA) in which she denied Plaintiff's applications for Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) under Title II of the Social Security Act and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) under Title XVI of the Social Security Act. This Court has jurisdiction to review the Commissioner's final decision pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g).

For the reasons that follow, the Court AFFIRMS the decision of the Commissioner and DISMISSES this matter.

ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY

Plaintiff protectively filed her applications for SSI and DIB on April 9, 2010, and alleged a disability onset date of February 13, 2010. Tr. 154, 159.[1] The applications were denied initially and on reconsideration. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) held a hearing on March 12, 2012. Tr. 33-55. Plaintiff was represented by an attorney at the hearing. Plaintiff, a lay witness, and a vocational expert (VE) testified at the hearing.

The ALJ issued a decision on April 27, 2012, in which he found Plaintiff is not disabled and, therefore, is not entitled to benefits. Tr. 20-27. Pursuant to 20 C.F.R. § 404.984(d), that decision became the final decision of the Commissioner on March 20, 2013, when the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff was born on November 13, 1957. Tr. 260. Plaintiff was 54 years old at the time of the hearing. Plaintiff has an eleventh-grade education. Tr. 192. Plaintiff has past relevant work experience as a caregiver, gas-station attendant, cashier, housekeeper, and teacher's aide. Tr. 52.

Plaintiff alleges disability due to irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, and back pain. Tr. 191.

Except when noted, Plaintiff does not challenge the ALJ's summary of the medical evidence. After carefully reviewing the medical records, this Court adopts the ALJ's summary of the medical evidence. See Tr. 24-26.

STANDARDS

The initial burden of proof rests on the claimant to establish disability. Molina v. Astrue, 674 F.3d 1104, 1110 (9th Cir. 2012). To meet this burden, a claimant must demonstrate her inability "to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which... has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months." 42 U.S.C. § 423(d)(1)(A). The ALJ must develop the record when there is ambiguous evidence or when the record is inadequate to allow for proper ...


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