United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Central Division, Lexington
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
R. Wilhoit United States District Judge.
has brought this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §405(g) to
challenge a final decision of the Defendant denying
Plaintiffs application for disability insurance benefits. The
Court having reviewed the record in this case and the
dispositive motions filed by the parties, and being otherwise
sufficiently advised, for the reasons set forth herein, finds
that the decision of the Administrative Law Judge is
supported by substantial evidence and should be affirmed.
FACTUAL BACKGROUND AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
filed her current application for disability insurance
benefits on alleging disability beginning on January 1, 2007,
due to chronic migraines, degenerative disc disease, worn
cartilage in her knee, a thyroid condition as well as
numbness and tingling in her hands and feet (Tr. 145). This
application was denied initially and on reconsideration.
Thereafter, upon request by Plaintiff, an administrative
hearing was conducted by Administrative Law Judge Sheila
Lowther (hereinafter "ALJ"), wherein Plaintiff,
accompanied by counsel, testified. At the hearing, Joyce P.
Forrest, a vocational expert (hereinafter "VE"),
hearing, pursuant to 20 C.F.R. § 416.920, the ALJ
performed the following five-step sequential analysis in
order to determine whether the Plaintiff was disabled:
Step 1: If the claimant is performing substantial gainful
work, he is not disabled.
Step 2: If the claimant is not performing substantial gainful
work, his impairment(s) must be severe before he can be found
to be disabled based upon the requirements in 20 C.F.R.
Step 3: If the claimant is not performing substantial gainful
work and has a severe impairment (or impairments) that has
lasted or is expected to last for a continuous period of at
least twelve months, and his impairments (or impairments)
meets or medically equals a listed impairment contained in
Appendix 1, Subpart P, Regulation No. 4, the claimant is
disabled without further inquiry.
Step 4: If the claimant's impairment (or impairments)
does not prevent him from doing his past relevant work, he is
Step 5: Even if the claimant's impairment or impairments
prevent him from performing his past relevant work, if other
work exists in significant numbers in the national economy
that accommodates his residual functional capacity and
vocational factors, he is not disabled.
issued a decision finding that Plaintiff was not disabled.
Plaintiff was 35 years at the time of the alleged onset of
disability. She has completed two years of college and has
prior work experience as a dental assustant and childcare
provider (Tr. 145-146).
1 of the sequential analysis, the ALJ found that Plaintiff
had not engaged in substantial gainful activity since the
alleged onset date of disability through her date last
insured of December 31, 2011 (Tr. 14).
then determined, at Step 2, that Plaintiff suffers from
chronic migraines, degenerative disc disease of the lumbar
spine, hypothyroidism and degenerative joint disease of the
right knee, which he found to be "severe" within
the meaning of the Regulations (Tr. 14-15).
3, the ALJ found that Plaintiffs impairments did not meet or
medically equal any ...