United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Central Division, Lexington
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
R. WILHOLT 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 his current application for disability insurance
benefits in January 2015, alleging disability beginning in
February 2012, due to bipolar disorder, depression, kidney
problems, insomnia, paranoia, shoulder problems, suicidal
thoughts, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, carpal
tunnel syndrome and liver problems. This application was
denied initially and on reconsideration and then denied by an
administrative law judge. The Appeals Council subsequently
vacated this decision and remanded the case for further
proceedings (Tr. 236-38). Thereafter, upon request by
Plaintiff, an administrative hearing was conducted by
Administrative Law Judge Roger Reynolds (hereinafter
"ALJ"), wherein Plaintiff, accompanied by counsel,
testified. At the hearing, Tina Stambaugh, a vocational
expert (hereinafter "VE"), also testified.
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 44 years old at the time of he alleges he
became disabled, he has a high school education. His past
relevant work experience consists of work as a correctional
1 of the sequential analysis, the ALJ found that Plaintiff
had not engaged in substantial gainful activity since the
daye after the most recent administratively final unfavorable
decision on a prior application (Tr. 43).
then determined, at Step 2, that Plaintiff suffers from
chronic bilateral shoulder pain of uncertain etiology,
chronic kidney disease, osteoarthritis, depressive disorder
and anxiety with paranoid tendencies, which he found to be
"severe" within the meaning of the Regulations (Tr.
3, the ALJ found that Plaintiffs impairments did not meet or
medically equal any of ...