United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Florence Division
E. Rogers, III United States Magistrate Judge
an action brought pursuant to Section 205(g) of the Social
Security Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. Section 405(g), to obtain
judicial review of a “final decision” of the
Commissioner of Social Security, denying Plaintiff's
claim for disability insurance benefits (DIB) and
supplemental security income (SSI). The only issues before
the Court are whether the findings of fact are supported by
substantial evidence and whether proper legal standards have
been applied. This action is proceeding before the
undersigned by voluntary consent pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
636(c) and Fed. R. Civ. Proc. R. 73.
filed an application for DIB and SSI on October 24, 2012,
alleging inability to work since March 1, 2012. (Tr. 13). Her
claims were denied initially and upon reconsideration.
Thereafter, Plaintiff filed a request for a hearing. A
hearing was held on August 30, 2016, at which time, a
vocational expert (VE) and Plaintiff, proceeding without
representation, testified. The Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)
issued an unfavorable decision on September 30, 2016, finding
that Plaintiff was not disabled within the meaning of the
Act. (Tr. 13-18). Plaintiff filed a request for review of the
ALJ's decision, which the Appeals Council denied on July
5, 2017, making the ALJ's decision the Commissioner's
final decision. Plaintiff filed this action on August 14,
2017. (ECF No. 1).
Plaintiff's Background and Medical History
was born on August 26, 1979, and was thirty-four years old at
the time of the alleged onset. (Tr. 57). Plaintiff alleges
disability originally due to car accident injuries, lower
back pain, neck pain, pain in both arms, and shoulder pain.
The ALJ's Decision
decision of September 30, 2016, the ALJ made the following
findings of fact and conclusions of law (Tr. 13-18):
1. The claimant meets the insured status requirements of the
Social Security Act through December 31, 2013.
2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful
activity since March 1, 2012, the alleged onset date (20 CPR
404.1571 et seq., and 416.971 et seq.).
3. The claimant has the following medically determinable
impairments: obesity, neck pain, back pain, shoulder pain,
and arm pain (20 CPR 404.1521 et seq. and 416.921
4. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of
impairments that has significantly limited (or is expected to
significantly limit) the ability to perform basic
work-related activities for 12 consecutive months; therefore,
the claimant does not have a severe impairment or combination
of impairments (20 CFR 404.1521 et seq. and 416.921
5. The claimant has not been under a disability, as defined
in the Social Security Act, from March 1, 2012, through the
date of this decision ...