Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

McKinney v. Berryhill

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Tacoma

June 13, 2018

MARK ANTHONY MCKINNEY, Plaintiff,
v.
NANCY A. BERRYHILL, Deputy Commissioner of Social Security for Operations, Defendant.

          ORDER REVERSING AND REMANDING THE CASE FOR FURTHER ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDINGS

          JOHN C. COUGHENOUR, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff, Mark Anthony McKinney, seeks review of the denial of his applications for Disability Insurance Benefits and Supplemental Insurance Security Income. Dkt. 1. Plaintiff contends the ALJ harmfully erred by rejecting the opinions of David Widlan, Ph.D., and Victoria McDuffee, Ph.D. Dkt. 14 at 1. As relief, plaintiff contends the Court should reverse the ALJ's decision and remand the case for further proceedings. Id. The Commissioner disagrees arguing the ALJ gave two valid reasons to reject the doctors' opinions. Dkt. 15 at 3. As discussed below, the Court finds the ALJ harmfully erred, REVERSES the Commissioner's final decision and REMANDS the matter for further administrative proceedings under sentence four of 42 U.S.C. § 405(g).

         THE ALJ'S DECISION

         Utilizing the five-step disability evaluation process set forth in 20 C.F.R. §§ 404.1520(a), 416.920(a), the ALJ found:

Step one: Plaintiff has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since the alleged onset date of May 14, 2013.
Step two: Affective disorder, anxiety disorder, personality disorder, and polysubstance abuse disorder are severe impairments.
Step three: These impairments do not meet or equal the requirements of a listed impairment. See 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P. Appendix 1.
Residual Functional Capacity: Plaintiff can perform the full range of work at all exertional levels. Due to mental disorders he can perform simple and detailed tasks, but would have difficulty performing complex tasks consistently. He can work in jobs away from the general public. He can have superficial contact with co-workers and supervisors and is able to work in groups of 10 or fewer individuals.
Step four: Plaintiff can perform past relevant work as a treatment center attendant - psych aide, truck driver, or construction worker.
Step five: Alternatively, plaintiff can perform other jobs that exist in significant numbers in the national economy and is therefore not disabled.

Tr. 14-27. The ALJ's decision is the Commissioner's final decision because the Appeals Council denied plaintiff's request for review. Tr. 1. The rest of the procedural history is not essential in determining the outcome of the case and is thus not recounted.

         DISCUSSION

         The Commissioner's determination a claimant is not disabled will be upheld if the findings of fact are supported by substantial evidence in the record as a whole and the proper legal standards were applied. Schneider v. Comm'r of the SSA, 223 F.3d 968, 973 (9th Cir. 2000). Plaintiff challenges how the ALJ handled the opinions of examining psychologists David Widlan, Ph.D., and Victoria McDuffee, Ph.D. Dkt. 14 at 1. The ALJ must provide clear and convincing reasons supported by substantial evidence to discount the uncontradicted opinions of these examining psychologists. See Lester v. Chater, 81 F.3d 821, 830 (9th Cir. 1995).

         A. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.