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Richards v. Colvin

United States District Court, N.D. New York

March 31, 2015

MAGDALENA RICHARDS, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

PETER A. GORTON, ESQ., LACHMAN & GORTON, Attorneys for Plaintiff.

TOMASINA DIGRIGOLI, ESQ., SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION OFFICE OF REGIONAL GENERAL COUNSEL - REGION II, Attorneys for Defendant.

MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER

FREDERICK J. SCULLIN, Jr., District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Currently before the Court are the parties' cross-motions for judgment on the pleadings. See Dkt. Nos. 13, 17.

II. BACKGROUND

On January 5, 2010, Plaintiff protectively filed an application for a period of disability, for Supplemental Security Income benefits and Disability Insurance benefits under Title XVI and Title II of the Social Security Act, respectively. See Dkt. No. 9, Administrative Record ("AR") at 11.[1] The Social Security Administration initially denied these applications on April 5, 2010. See id. at 50. On May 24, 2010, Plaintiff filed a timely request for a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") to challenge the denial. See id. at 69.

On March 24, 2011, Plaintiff appeared with counsel for a video hearing before ALJ Greener. See id. at 27. By decision dated May 17, 2011, the ALJ denied Plaintiff's application for benefits. See id. at 11-22. In reaching her decision, the ALJ made the following findings:

1. Plaintiff met the insured status requirements of the Social Security Act through March 31, 2013.
2. Plaintiff had not engaged in substantial gainful activity since June 1, 2009, the alleged onset date.
3. Plaintiff's bipolar disorder was a severe impairment.
4. Plaintiff's high blood pressure was a non-severe impairment.
5. Plaintiff's impairments did not meet or medically equal any of the listed impairments in 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1.
6. Plaintiff's allegations regarding her limitations were not totally credible.
7. Plaintiff had the residual functional capacity ("RFC") to perform a full range of work at all exertional levels but with the following nonexertional limitations: she was limited to low stress tasks, i.e., routine daily tasks, which were not fast-paced and did not change in pace or location on a day-to-day basis.
8. Plaintiff could not perform an past relevant work.
9. Plaintiff was a younger individual on the alleged disability onset date, with a high school education and was able to communicate in English.
10. Given Plaintiff's age, education, work experience, and RFC, jobs existed in significant numbers in the national ...

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