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Brown v. Colvin

United States District Court, Western District of Washington, Tacoma

April 10, 2015

BILLY WAYNE BROWN, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.

ORDER AFFIRMING DEFENDANT’S DECISION TO DENY BENEFITS

ROBERT J. BRYAN, United States District Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on the Report and Recommendation of Judge Karen L. Strombom, United States Magistrate Judge. Dkt. 23. The Court has considered plaintiff's complaint (Dkt. 3), the Report and Recommendation (Dkt. 23), objections to the Report and Recommendation and related responsive briefing (Dkt. 23; Dkt. 25), and the file therein.

Having reviewed the record, the Court adopts the Report and Recommendation, which affirms Defendant’s denial of Plaintiff’s application for disability insurance and supplemental security income (“SSI”) benefits. See Dkt. 23. The Court also finds Plaintiff’s objections to the Report and Recommendation to be unpersuasive. First, Plaintiff objects on the basis that the ALJ did not provide legally sufficient reasons to reject Plaintiff’s expert witness, Dr. Christmas Covell. Dkt. 23, at 1-4. However, as the Report and Recommendation points out, although “the ALJ did not incorporate Dr. Covell’s opinion word-for-word, the ALJ did not improperly characterize the functional limitations opined by Dr. Covell, ” Dkt. 21, at 9, because the ALJ need not “repea[t] each functional limitation verbatim in the RFC assessment” but may instead “synthesize and translate assessed limitations.” Quill v. Colvin, 2014 WL 3608894 (E.D. Wash. 2014) (citing Stubbs-Danielson v. Astrue, 539 F.3d 1219, 1228 (9th Cir. 2008). Second, Plaintiff objects that the ALJ did not provide legally sufficient reasons to discredit Plaintiff’s subjective testimony. Dkt. 23, at 4-7. Plaintiff is mistaken. The ALJ’s opinion shows clear and convincing reasons to reject Plaintiff’s testimony, including the ALJ’s finding that (1) Plaintiff’s allegations were not supported by the objective medical evidence; (2) Plaintiff’s allegations were not supported by his own statements; and (3) Plaintiff’s own statements were contradictory. ALJ AR 41-45. Accordingly, the Court HEREBY ORDERS that:

(1) the Court adopts the Report and Recommendation (Dkt. 23); and

(2) the administrative decision is AFFIRMED.

(3) The Clerk shall direct copies of this Order to all parties and to Magistrate Judge Strombom.


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