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Attwood v. Commissioner of Social Security

United States District Court, D. Oregon

March 26, 2018

WILLIAM DICKSON ATTWOOD II, Plaintiff,
v.
Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

          FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATION

          Thomas M. Coffin Judge.

         Plaintiff brings this proceeding to obtain judicial review of the Commissioner's final decision denying plaintiff's application for Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

         FACTUAL BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff was 51 years old at the time of his alleged onset date. He finished the 10th grade and earned his GED.

         The ALJ found that plaintiff had the following severe impairments: asthma; degenerative disc disease, cyclical vomiting syndrome; adjustment disorder with mixed anxiety and depressed mood; generalized anxiety disorder; post -traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); fibromyalgia; history of marijuana abuse; and history of methamphetamine abuse.

         The ALJ found that plaintiff had mild impairments in activities of daily living; moderate limitations in social functioning; and mild to moderate impairments in the areas of maintaining concentration, persistence and pace in the workplace.

         The ALJ found a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) to perform light level work, with the following additional limitations: no public contact; no more than occasional contact with co-workers; no work more complex than jobs with a Specific Vocational Preparation level of 1 or 2; no exposure to even moderate pulmonary irritants; and allowance for bathroom breaks 3 to 4 times a day.

         The ALJ found that plaintiff could not do his past relevant work. After taking vocational expert testimony, the ALJ found at Step 5 that plaintiff could perform other work in the economy including the jobs of bakery line worker and packing line worker.

         DISCUSSION

         The ALJ found plaintiff only partially credible, gave several reasons for such finding, and accorded plaintiff s reports and statements only some weight. TR. 33. Plaintiff does not challenge this finding.

         Plaintiff argues that the ALJ improperly rejected the opinion of 3 of plaintiff's treating doctors.

         Although plaintiff attempts to categorize defendant's argument as not consistent with the applicable legal standards, defendant does present an argument that is consistent with the applicable legal standards, i.e., that the ALJ's decision is supported by substantial evidence and free of harmful legal error. P. 2 and p. 12 of Defendant's Brief (#27).

         1. Plaintiff's Treating Psychiatrist, Dr. Feinman

         Dr. Feinman is a treating treating psychiatrist. In May of 2014, she opined, as applicable here, that plaintiff had moderately severe to severe impairment in his ability to maintain attention and concentration for two straight hours, to work in coordination or proximity to others, to make simple work-related decisions, and to complete a normal workday or workweek without psychologically related symptoms. She stated that plaintiff had mostly moderate impairment in social functioning, but moderate to severe impairment in his ability to get along with coworkers and peers without distracting them or ...


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