United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
ORDER REVERSING AND REMANDING CASE FOR FURTHER
C. COUGHENOUR, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Hines seeks review of the denial of his application for
Supplemental Security Income and Disability Insurance
Benefits. Mr. Hines' lawyer filed an opening brief that
violates the Court's scheduling order, Dkt. 8, in that it
fails to list the errors alleged beginning on page one, and
sets forth the issue for review in general statements,
exactly as the Court prohibits. Counsel is advised that
future briefs that fail to conform to the Court's
scheduling order may be summarily stricken.
Hines contends the ALJ's residual functional capacity
(RFC) determination fails to account for all of his physical
and mental limitations. Dkt. 9. As discussed below, the Court
REVERSES the Commissioner's final
decision and REMANDS the matter for further
administrative proceedings under sentence four of 42 U.S.C.
Hines is currently 57 years old, has a limited education, and
has worked as a truck operator, stock clerk, and stores
laborer. Tr. 28. Mr. Hines was previously awarded disability
income, ending upon his incarceration in July 2010. Tr. 19.
After his release in December 2013, Mr. Hines filed a
reapplication for supplemental security income, amended to
allege disability as of the reapplication date, which was
denied initially and on reconsideration. Tr. 19. ALJ Ilene
Sloan conducted a hearing and, on November 23, 2015, issued a
decision finding Mr. Hines not disabled. Tr. 19-30.
the five-step disability evaluation process,  the ALJ found:
Step one: Mr. Hines has not worked since the
Step two: Mr. Hines has the following severe
impairments: status post multiple bilateral foot surgeries,
obesity, borderline intellectual functioning, depressive
disorder, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD),
personality disorder, and cocaine dependence.
Step three: These impairments do not meet or
equal the requirements of a listed impairment.
Residual Functional Capacity: Mr. Hines can
perform medium work, frequently stooping, kneeling,
crouching, crawling, and climbing ramps and stairs,
occasionally climbing ladders, ropes, and scaffolds, and with
no limitation on balancing. He can perform simple, routine,
repetitive tasks but nothing detailed or complex. He is
limited to no more than occasional contact with the public,
and no tandem tasks or tasks involving cooperative team
Step four: Mr. Hines cannot perform past
Step five: As there are jobs that exist in
significant numbers in the national economy that he can
perform, Mr. Hines is not disabled.
21-29. The Appeals Council denied Mr. Hines' request for
review, making the ALJ's decision the Commissioner's
final decision. Tr. 1.
Hines contends the ALJ's RFC determination fails to
account for all of his physical and mental limitations. He
argues the ALJ erroneously found (1) he has the RFC to
perform medium duty work, when the medical evidence shows he
is limited to light or sedentary work, (2) he can perform
simple, routine work without accounting for his difficulty in
maintaining concentration, ...