United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Tacoma
ORDER REVERSING AND REMANDING DEFENDANT'S
DECISION TO DENY BENEFITS
Theresa L. Fricke United States Magistrate Judge
has brought this matter for judicial review of
defendant's denial of her application for disability
parties have consented to have this matter heard by the
undersigned Magistrate Judge. 28 U.S.C. § 636(c);
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 73; Local Rule MJR 13. For
the reasons set forth below, the undersigned agrees that the
ALJ erred and the ALJ's decision is reversed and remanded
for an award of benefits.
ISSUES FOR REVEW
the ALJ err in finding that Plaintiff could perform her past
relevant work at step four?
the ALJ err in evaluating Plaintiff's symptom testimony?
the ALJ properly evaluate the medical opinion evidence?
the ALJ err in discounting lay witness testimony?
October 2, 2015, Plaintiff filed an application for
disability insurance benefits, alleging a disability onset
date of September 7, 2015. AR 17, 161-67. Plaintiff's
application was denied upon initial administrative review and
on reconsideration. AR 17, 98-100. A hearing was held before
Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) Timothy Mangrum
on August 10, 2017. AR 37-65. In a decision dated March 22,
2018, the ALJ found that Plaintiff was not disabled. AR
14-32. The Social Security Appeals Council denied
Plaintiff's request for review on December 17, 2018. AR
January 31, 2019, Plaintiff filed a complaint in this Court
seeking judicial review of the ALJ's written decision.
Dkt. 4. Plaintiff asks this Court to reverse the ALJ's
decision and to remand this case for an award of benefits.
Dkt. 10, pp. 14-15.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Court will uphold an ALJ's decision unless: (1) the
decision is based on legal error; or (2) the decision is not
supported by substantial evidence. Revels v.
Berryhill, 874 F.3d 648, 654 (9th Cir. 2017).
Substantial evidence is “‘such relevant evidence
as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a
conclusion.'” Biestek v. Berryhill, 139
S.Ct. 1148, 1154 (2019). This requires “more than a
mere scintilla” of evidence. Id.
Court must consider the administrative record as a whole.
Garrison v. Colvin,759 F.3d 995, 1009 (9th Cir.
2014). The Court is required to weigh both the evidence that
supports, and evidence that does not support, the ALJ's
conclusion. Id. The Court may not affirm the
decision of the ALJ for a reason upon which the ALJ did not
rely. Id. ...