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Golemon v. Colvin

United States District Court, S.D. Alabama, Southern Division

September 5, 2014

BETTY GOLEMON, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

WILLIAM E. CASSADY, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff brings this action, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1383(c)(3), seeking judicial review of a final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security denying her claim for supplemental security income benefits. The parties have consented to the exercise of jurisdiction by the Magistrate Judge, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c), for all proceedings in this Court. (Docs. 14 & 16 ("In accordance with the provisions of 28 U.S.C. 636(c) and Fed.R.Civ.P. 73, the parties in this case consent to have a United States Magistrate Judge conduct any and all proceedings in this case, ... order the entry of a final judgment, and conduct all post-judgment proceedings.").) Upon consideration of the administrative record, plaintiff's brief, the Commissioner's brief, and the arguments of counsel for the parties at the August 27, 2014 hearing before the Court, it is determined that the Commissioner's decision denying benefits should be reversed and remanded for further proceedings not inconsistent with this decision.[1]

Plaintiff alleges disability due to psoriasis, myalgias with degenerative disc disease, cervical radiculopathy, carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, anxiety, depression, vertigo, hypertension, asthma, obesity, and bilateral degenerative joint disease of the knees. The Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) made the following relevant findings:

1. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since January 4, 2011, the application date (20 CFR 416.971 et seq. ).

2. The claimant has the following severe impairments: myalgias with degenerative disc disease, cervical radiculopathy, carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, anxiety, depression, vertigo, hypertension, asthma, obesity, and bilateral degenerative joint disease of the knees (20 CFR 416.920(c)).

...
Following the alleged onset date of June 10, 2007, through calendar year 2008, the record documented periodic visits to the Mostellar Medical Center, for a variety of complaints including indigestion, back and knee pain, burning on urination, rectal bleeding, psoriasis, and cold symptoms.... It is noted that when seen for follow up of her psoriasis, the claimant's extremities were described as normal (Exhibits 1F and 7F).
The medical records through 2008 noted treatment of the claimant for various complaints but did not describe ongoing treatment for a specific illness or impairment over 12 consecutive months. The record, rather, described sporadic treatment for numerous complaints and specific testing was not supportive of a disabling impairment.... The claimant was [] seen, at different times, for... psoriasis....
...
The claimant applied for benefits in January 2011. The medical evidence for the calendar year 2010, a full year prior to her filing for benefits, includes continuing reports from the Mostellar Medical Center. The notes from early 2010 show periodic treatment for various complaints including
... psoriasis of the elbows and knees.... In May 2010, she reported right pelvic pain and in September 2010, she reported having back and knee pain. At that time, psoriasis was not indicated as a diagnosis but a hiatal hernia was indicated.
...
For 2011, the record shows that the claimant was seen at the Mostellar Medical Center for right knee pain, following a fall, and for psoriasis of her left hand and foot, and right knee.... In September and in October 2011, the claimant was treated for cold symptoms, asthma, and psoriasis.
...
In February 2012, the Mostellar Medical Center noted that the claimant had multiple complaints and recommended that she be seen ...

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