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Charlton v. Commissioner of Social Security

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK


May 27, 2009

JEFFREY CHARLTON, PLAINTIFF,
v.
COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: David R. Homer U.S. Magistrate Judge

MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER

Plaintiff Jeffrey Charlton ("Charlton") brought an action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) seeking review of a decision by the Commissioner of Social Security ("Commissioner") denying his application for benefits under the Social Security Act. Docket No. 1. On March 26, 2009, a Memorandum-Decision and Order was entered upholding the Commissioner's findings. Docket Nos. 16, 17. While that decision was in the Clerk's Office awaiting formal filing and service, Charlton's counsel submitted a letter of the same date requesting that additional medical records be considered in this case. Docket No. 15. The letter was filed after the decision was submitted for filing and its request and attachments were not considered in the decision. Charlton's request will, therefore, be considered as a motion for reconsideration of the decision filed March 26, 2009 and, for the following reasons, Charlton's motion is denied.

A motion for reconsideration is granted sparingly and only upon a showing that the court overlooked "controlling decisions or data . . . that might reasonably be expected to alter the conclusion reached by the court." Schrader v. CSX Transp., Inc., 70 F.3d 255, 257 (2d Cir. 1995). "There are three possible grounds upon which a motion for reconsideration may be granted: (1) an intervening change in law, (2) the availability of evidence not previously available, or (3) the need to correct a clear error of law or prevent manifest injustice." Fox v. Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp., No. 06-CV-1135 (LEK/RFT), 2009 WL 656406, at *1 (N.D.N.Y. Mar. 11, 2009) (citing Shannon v. Verizon N.Y., Inc., 519 F. Supp. 2d 304, 307 (N.D.N.Y. 2007); Doe v. New York City Dep't of Soc. Servs., 709 F. 2d 782, 789 (2d Cir. 1983)).

In this case, there has been no change in the law or need to correct clear error. The proffered additional medical evidence details a sleep study Charlton underwent which diagnosed him with moderate to severe sleep apnea and treatment notes concerning Charlton's swollen legs and cellulitis.*fn1 Docket No. 15. While these medical reports were unavailable at the time of the March 26 decision, their contents do not contradict the overwhelming evidence supporting the conclusion of the decision denying Charlton's motion and upholding the decision of the Commissioner.*fn2 As such, the additional evidence cannot reasonably be expected to change the decision of the Court and Charlton's motion is denied.*fn3

VI. Conclusion

For the reasons stated above, it is hereby ORDERED that Charlton's letter-motion seeking reconsideration (Docket No. 15) is DENIED.

DATED: May 27, 2009 Albany, New York


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