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Crabtree v. Colvin

United States District Court, M.D. North Carolina

July 2, 2015

CHARLES MARCUS CRABTREE, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND RECOMMENDATION OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

L. PATRICK AULD, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff, Charles Marcus Crabtree, brought this action pursuant to the Social Security Act (the "Act") to obtain judicial review of a final decision of Defendant, the Commissioner of Social Security, denying Plaintiff's claim for Disability Insurance Benefits ("DIB") and Supplemental Security Income ("SSI"). (Docket Entry 2.) The Court has before it the certified administrative record (cited herein as "Tr. __"), as well as the parties' cross-motions for judgment (Docket Entries 11, 16). For the reasons that follow, the Court should enter judgment for Defendant.

I. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Plaintiff filed an application for DIB and SSI on November 23, 2009, alleging a disability onset date of February 1, 2009. (Tr. 220-28.) Upon denial of that application initially (Tr. 74-103, 142-53) and on reconsideration (Tr. 104-35, 158-75), Plaintiff requested a hearing de novo before an Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") (Tr. 176). Plaintiff, his attorney, and a vocational expert ("VE") attended the hearing. (Tr. 41-73.) By decision dated July 11, 2011, the ALJ determined that Plaintiff did not qualify as disabled under the Act. (Tr. 27-40.) On June 20, 2012, the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review (Tr. 4-8), making the ALJ's ruling the Commissioner's final decision for purposes of judicial review.

In rendering that disability determination, the ALJ made the following findings later adopted by the Commissioner:

1. [Plaintiff] meets the insured status requirements of the [] Act through December 31, 2014.
2. [Plaintiff] has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since February 1, 2009, the alleged onset date.
....
3. [Plaintiff] has the following severe impairments: thoracic disc disease; narcolepsy; sleep apnea; attention deficit disorder (ADD); osteoarthritis[;] obesity[;] depression and anxiety.[1]
....
4. [Plaintiff] does not have 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.
....
5.... [Plaintiff] has the residual functional capacity to perform light work... except he should avoid activities around unprotected heights and dangerous machinery. [Plaintiff] is limited to simple, routine, repetitive tasks. He is capable of lifting/carrying 20 pounds occasionally and 10 pounds frequently. In an 8-hour workday, [Plaintiff] is capable of standing and/or walking 6 hours and sitting 6 hours.
....
6. [Plaintiff] is unable to perform any past relevant work.
....
10. Considering [Plaintiff's] age, education, work experience, and residual functional capacity, there are jobs that exist in significant numbers in the national economy that [Plaintiff] can perform.
....
11. [Plaintiff] has not been under a disability, as defined in the [] Act, from February 1, 2009, through ...

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