United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Charleston Division
JUANITA FLUDD, substitute claimant for Angie Bowman, deceased, Plaintiff,
ANDREW SAUL, Acting Commissioner of the Social Security Administration, Defendant.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
GORDON BAKER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
case is before the Court for a Report and Recommendation
pursuant to Local Rule 73.02(B)(2)(a), D.S.C., concerning the
disposition of Social Security cases in this District, and
Title 28, United States Code, Section 636(b)(1)(B). Angie
Bowman (“Bowman”) brought this action pursuant to
Section 205(g) of the Social Security Act, as amended, (42
U.S.C. § 405(g)), to obtain judicial review of a final
decision of the Commissioner of Social Security
Administration (the “Administration”) regarding
her claim for Disability Insurance Benefits
(“DIB”) and Supplemental Security Income
(“SSI”) under Titles II and XVI of the Social
Security Act (the “Act”). For the reasons set
forth below, the undersigned recommends that this matter be
remanded for further consideration and analysis by the
FACTS AND ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDINGS
was 46 years old on her alleged disability onset date of May
15, 2014. (R. at 14, 26, 66, 78, 143.) Bowman alleged
disability due to, inter alia, lupus; rheumatoid arthritis;
edema; chronic anemia; chronic Vitamin C deficiency; and
muscle spasms. (Id. at 66-67, 78, 193.) Bowman has
past relevant work as a forklift operator, bakery worker, and
short order cook. (Id. at 26, 61-63.)
filed an application for DIB on October 27, 2014, and an
application for SSI on December 9, 2014. (Id. at 17;
Dkt. No. 16 at 1-2.) Her claims were denied initially on
March 9, 2015, and on reconsideration on July 17, 2015. (R.
at 17, 93, 99.) After a hearing before the Administrative Law
Judge (“ALJ”) on May 1, 2017, (id. at
33-65), the ALJ issued a decision on July 20, 2017, and found
that Bowman was not disabled (id. at 17-27).
died in her home on August 8, 2017. (Id. at 9.) On
November 20, 2017, Bowman's daughter, Juanita Fludd
(hereinafter referred to as “Plaintiff” or
“Fludd”), was substituted as a party to her
mother's claims and, on May 29, 2018, proceeded with this
appeal of the ALJ's decision. (Id. at 10; Dkt.
No. 1.) The Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request
for review of the DIB claim, (R. at 5-7), making the
ALJ's decision the Commissioner's final decision for
purposes of judicial review.
making the determination that Plaintiff is not entitled to
benefits, the Commissioner has adopted the following findings
of the decision:
(1) The claimant meets the insured status requirements of the
Social Security Act through March 31, 2019.
(2) The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful
activity since May 15, 2014, the alleged onset date (20 CFR
404.1571 et seq., and 416.971 et seq.).
(3) The claimant has the following severe impairments: lupus,
rheumatoid arthritis, and carpal tunnel syndrome (20 CFR
404.1520(c) and 416.920(c)).
(4) The claimant does not have an impairment or combination
of impairments that meets or medically equals the severity of
one of the listed impairments in 20 CFR Part 404, Subpart P,
Appendix 1 (20 CFR 404.1520(d), 404.1525, 404.1526,
416.920(d), 416.925 and 416.926).
(5) After careful consideration of the entire record, I find
that the claimant has the residual functional capacity to
perform light work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(b) and
416.967(b) with the following additional limitations: No.
kneeling, crawling, or climbing ladders, ropes, or scaffolds;
no exposure to unprotected heights or dangerous machinery;
occasional balancing, stooping, crouching, or climbing ramps
or stairs; and frequent handling or fingering, bilaterally.
(6) The claimant is unable to perform any past relevant work
(20 CFR 404.1565 and 416.965).
(7) The claimant was born on December 20, 1967, and was 46
years old, which is defined as a younger individual age
18-49, on the alleged disability onset date (20 CFR 404.1563
(8) The claimant has at least a high school education and is
able to communicate in English (20 CFR 404.1564 and 416.964).
(9) Transferability of job skills is not material to the
determination of disability because using the
Medical-Vocational Rules as a framework supports a finding
that the claimant is “not disabled, ” whether or
not the claimant has transferable job skills (See SSR 82-41
and 20 CFR Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 2).
(10) Considering the claimant's age, education, work
experience, and residual functional capacity, there are jobs
that exist in significant numbers in the national economy
that the claimant can perform (20 CFR 404.1569, 404.1569(a),
416.969, and 416.969(a)).
(11) The claimant has not been under a disability, as defined
in the Social Security Act, from May 15, 2014, through the
date of this decision (20 CFR 404.1520(g) and 416.920(g)).
(Id. at 19-27.)