United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
ORDER REVERSING THE COMMISSIONER'S
A. TSUCHIDA, CHIEF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
seeks review of the denial of her applications for
Supplemental Security Income and Disability Insurance
Benefits. She contends the ALJ erred in assessing the medical
evidence, her subjective testimony, and statements written by
her girlfriend. Dkt. 11. 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.
is currently 34 years old, has a high school diploma, and has
worked as a general laborer. Tr. 446. In April 2015, she
applied for benefits, alleging disability as of December 2,
2014. Tr. 408-15. Her applications were denied initially and
on reconsideration. Tr. 248-55, 258-69. The ALJ conducted a
hearing on December 15, 2017 (Tr. 123-57), and subsequently
found Plaintiff not disabled. Tr. 15-29. As the Appeals
Council denied Plaintiff's request for review, the
ALJ's decision is the Commissioner's final decision.
the five-step disability evaluation process,  the ALJ found:
Step one: Plaintiff has not engaged in
substantial gainful activity since the alleged onset date.
Step two: Plaintiff's affective
disorder, anxiety disorder, borderline personality disorder,
history of obesity, and degenerative disc disease of the
cervical spine are severe impairments.
Step three: These impairments did not meet
or equal the requirements of a listed
RFC: Plaintiff can perform light work, with
additional limitations: she needs a sit/stand alternating
option. She can stand/walk for no more than two hours at one
time for four out of eight hours in a workday. She cannot
work in a dangerous industrial setting, around unprotected
heights, or a very noisy setting. She can engage in
work-related routine and perfunctory social interaction, but
will not be well suited for higher level or sophisticated
Step four: Plaintiff could not perform her
Step five: As there are jobs that exist in
significant numbers in the national economy that Plaintiff
can perform, she is not disabled.