Williams v. Social Security Administration
Court Docket Sheet

Eastern District of Arkansas

3:2018-cv-00002 (ared)

MOTION for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis by Bobbie Jo Williams.

Case 3:18-cv-00002-JM-JTK Document 1 Filed 01/08/18 Page 1FILED of 2 U.S. DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT ARKANSAS AO 240 (Rev. 07/10) Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (Short Fonn) UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURJ:MES w. Mc for the By: ___~~~P~~f\!1r:tt7 Eastern District of Arkansas BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS) Plaintiff/Petitioner) v.) Civil Action No. COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY) Defendant/Respondent) APPLICATION TO PROCEED IN DISTRICT COURT WITHOUT PREPAYING FEES OR COSTS (Short Form) I am a plaintiff or petitioner in this case and declare that I am unable to pay the costs of these proceedings and that I am entitled to the reliefrequested. In support of this application, I answer the following questions under penalty of perjury: 1. If incarcerated. I am being held at: _ ....... =-··""'··-=;::;::=~~:;:::::~======~=· If employed there, or have an account in the jnstim · n, I have attached to this oc a statement certified by the ............. appropriate institutional officer ~ngarlreceipts, expenditures, and balances during the a · onths for any institutional account i~a'iile. I am also submitting a similar statement from any other institution w I was incarcerated du.~g.ttie last six months. 2. If not incarcerated. Ifl am employed, my employer's name and address are: My gross pay or wages are: $ ---+-j1____,and my take-home pay or wages are: $ per (specify pay period) I/L. . . . . . . .. 3. Other Income. In the past 12 months, I have received income from the following sources (check all that apply): (a) Business, profession, or other self-employment 0 Yes °'lst.No (b) Rent payments, interest, or dividends 0 Yes No ! (c) Pension, annuity, or life insurance payments 0 Yes No (d) Disability, or worker's compensation payments 0 Yes No (e) Gifts, or inheritances 0 Yes No (f) Any other sources 'ISl._Yes No Ifyou answered "Yes" to any question above, describe below or on separate pages each source ofmoney and state the amount that you received and what you expect to receive in the future. f) son (tl 1t v~ r svcicll 1elU!l ity il If w1 ot et -e cu,,e a tcm.wi - Jt(uZ1vio. J1LUVOLn01 J vtfltWlPlO~ltlQA!Ut - ~ l llPO mo. AO 240 (Rev. 07/10) Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (Short Fonn) 4. Amount of money that I have in cash or in a checking or savings account: $ a{A·I)(2) 5. Any automobile, real estate, stock, bond, security, trust, jewelry, art work, or other financial instrument or thing of value that I own, including any item of value held in someone else's name (describe the property and its approximate u1,e vv s1· Iv~ rC1 c1 o value): ~ au 4 ~ "lc:xJ o vct l LU. PuGl/ 0111 irw vrft'1i7 iltau5 oomge KJUtYt vta .. 11 o o Vt!lt~u /?CLY oti n11vntt11~ 6. Any housing, transportation, utilities, or loan payments, or othe_r re~l.ar monthly ex~enses (describe and provide the amount ofthe monthly expense): (Hlt m4 uo;V)O r (J cl I l l tti1 C1 J .B aV YVl v. b\\VeVBdO ~ 3lflon~o. ·rooa'tl 4 oovvrn~ 1V1rfrfLlt 11 /20/ 0 ~ lt\ ut i1 tt; 32 o n10. e1~m fl 11rvma, CLl V 1¥1 5 '6 I Oq WI d. 9ctJ Ji J1J w1u. ccur qUiS $ 800 mo. f 11Url! ~ 11 OU \~yi). 7. Names (or, if under 18, initials only) of all persons who are dependent on me for support, my relationship with each person, and how much I contribute to their support: \1 'If (t(uf ct J111 - s. ~ . \) 8. Any debts or financial obligations (describe the amounts owed and to whom they are payable): Declaration: I declare under penalty of perjury that the above information ·s true and understand that a false statement may result in a dismissal of my claims. Date: -~jJ_J[____ .----JJ~-- -~~ *.w~ ~ttu9q~ pllv1n9 \')lDVHh\Y b1llS, Bobbie Jo Williams ~\J { pt\\J hJ nvn ivJ ccm. tA.H1f n wt Printed 1tame Ci1\1"\ . I (Ctv1 not (i\f'tb(~ YVU J 400 f l \ (ti\ g tf(.

COMPLAINT against Social Security Administration, filed by Bobbie Jo Williams.

FILED U.S. DISTRICT COURT !=.ASTERN DISTRICT ARKANSAS UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS (SOUTHERN DIVISION)) BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS,) Soc.Sec. #XXX-XX-9425,)) Plaintiff,) COMPLAINT v.)) Civil Action No. J: 18'-cv- POOO~ fm) NANCY A. BERRYHILL, ACTING) COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY,) This to District Judge _/!1.ftL.l__ Defendant.)) and "' Judge_ lftn&vJ.L_ .. _____ Plaintiff, Bobbie Jo Williams, by her attorney, Howard D. Olinsky, alleges as follows: 1. The jurisdiction of this Court is invoked pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) to review a decision of the Commissioner of Social Security denying Plaintiffs application for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits for lack of disability. 2. This action is an appeal from a final administrative decision denying Plaintiffs claim. 3. This action is commenced within the appropriate time period set forth in the attached Appeals Council Notice dated November 6, 2017. (Exhibit A). 4. Plaintiff, whose social security number is XXX-XX-9425, resides in Imboden, Randolph County, Arkansas, which is within this judicial district and division. 5. The Defendant, Nancy A. Berryhill, is the acting Commissioner of Social Security of the United States of America. 6. The agency committed error of law by denying Appeals Council review of the decision by the Administrative Law Judge, or otherwise to deny relief that was within the authority of the Appeals Council. 7. Plaintiff is disabled. 8. The conclusions and findings of fact of the Defendant are not supported by substantial evidence and are contrary to law and regulation. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays that this Court: 1. Find that the Plaintiff is entitled to Social Security Disability Insurance benefits under the provisions of the Social Security Act; or 2. Remand the case for a further hearing; 3. Award attorney's fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2412, on the grounds that the Commissioner's action in this case was not substantially justified; and 4. Order such other and further relief as the Court deems just and proper. Respectfully submitted, BY: Howard D. Olinsky, Es NYS Bar #: 2044865 Attorney for Plaintiff OLINSKY LAW GROUP One Park Place 300 S. State Street, Ste. 420 Syracuse, New York 13202 t. 315.701.5780 f: 315.701.5781 e: holinsky@windisability.com DATED: January 5, 2018

Exhibit A

EXHIBIT A \. s.ecu ~~?.SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION:f"usA.'\'=- ~ IJlllll,! Refer to: TLC Office of Disability Adjudication .,,"1sri-1' -9425 and Review 5107 Leesburg Pike Falls Church, VA 22041-3255 Telephone: (877) 670-2722 Date: November 6, 2017 NOTICE OF APPEALS COUNCIL ACTION Ms. Bobbie Jo Williams This is about your request for review of the Administrative Law Judge's decision dated March 13, 2017. You submitted reasons that you disagree with the decision. We considered the reasons and exhibited them on the enclosed Order of the Appeals Council. We found that the reasons do not provide a basis for changing the Administrative Law Judge's decision. We Have Denied Your Request for Review We found no reason under our rules to review the Administrative Law Judge's decision. Therefore, we have denied your request for review. This means that the Administrative Law Judge's decision is the final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security in your case. Rules We Applied We applied the laws, regulations and rulings in effect as of the date we took this action. Under our rules, we will review your case for any of the following reasons: • The Administrative Law Judge appears to have abused his or her discretion. • There is an error oflaw. • The decision is not supported by substantial evidence. • There is a broad policy or procedural issue that may affect the public interest. Suspect Social Security Fraud? Please visit http://oig.ssa.gov/r or call the Inspector General's Fraud Hotline at 1-800-269-0271(fTY1-866-501-2101). See Next Page Bobbie Jo Williams ~9425) Page 2 of3 • We receive additional evidence that you show is new, material, and relates to the period on or before the date of the hearing decision. You must also show there is a reasonable probability that the additional evidence would change the outcome of the decision. You must show good cause for why you missed informing us about or submitting it earlier. If You Disagree With Our Action If you disagree with our action, you may ask for court review of the Administrative Law Judge's decision by filing a civil action. If you do not ask for court review, the Administrative Law Judge's decision will be a final decision that can be changed only under special rules. How to File a Civil Action You may file a civil action (ask for court review) by filing a complaint in the United States District Court for the judicial district in which you live. The complaint should name the Commissioner of Social Security as the defendant and should include the Social Security number(s) shown at the top of this letter. You or your representative must deliver copies of your complaint and of the summons issued by the court to the U.S. Attorney for the judicial district where you file your complaint, as provided in rule 4(i) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. You or your representative must also send copies of the complaint and summons, by certified or registered mail, to the Social Security Administration's Office of the General Counsel that is responsible for the processing and handling of litigation in the particular judicial district in which the complaint is filed. The names, addresses, and jurisdictional responsibilities of these offices are published in the Federal Register (70 FR 73320, December 9, 2005), and are available on-line at the Social Security Administration's Internet site, http://policy. ssa. gov/poms.nsf/links/0203106020. You or your representative must also send copies of the complaint and summons, by certified or registered mail, to the Attorney General of the United States, Washington, DC 20530. Time To File a Civil Action • You have 60 days to file a civil action (ask for court review). • The 60 days start the day after you receive this letter. We assume you received this letter 5 days after the date on it unless you show us that you did not receive it within the 5-day period. See Next Page Bobbie Jo Williams ~--9425) Page 3 of3 • If you cannot file for court review within 60 days, you may ask the Appeals Council to extend your time to file. You must have a good reason for waiting more than 60 days to ask for court review. You must make the request in writing and give your reason(s) in the request. You must mail your request for more time to the Appeals Council at the address shown at the top of this notice. Please put the Social Security number(s) also shown at the top of this notice on your request. We will send you a letter telling you whether your request for more time has been granted. About The Law The right to court review for claims under Title II (Social Security) is provided for in Section 205(g) of the Social Security Act. This section is also Section 405(g) of Title 42 of the United States Code. The right to court review for claims under Title XVI (Supplemental Security Income) is provided for in Section 163l(c)(3) of the Social Security Act. This section is also Section 1383(c) of Title 42 of the United States Code. The rules on filing civil actions are Rules 4(c) and (i) in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. If You Have Any Questions If you have any questions, you may call, write, or visit any Social Security office. If you do call or visit an office, please have this notice with you. The telephone number of the local office that serves your area is. Its address is: Social Security 4750 S Garnett Rd Tulsa, OK 74146-5222 Adelaide Edelson Administrative Appeals Judge Enclosure: Order of Appeals Council cc: James R Shaw P. 0. Box 1987 Fairview Heights, IL 62208 Bobbie Jo Williams Claimant Social Security Number Wage Earner Social Security Number AC EXHIBITS LIST COURT:-.JO. OF TRANSCRIPT EXHIBIT NO. DESCRIPTION PAGES PAGE NO. Exhibit 16B Request for Review received March 14, 2017 4 Exhibit 18E Representative Briefreceived April 10, 2017 3 Social Security Administration OFFICE OF DISABILITY ADJUDICATION AND REVIEW ORDER OF APPEALS COUNCIL I~ THE CASE OF CLAIM FOR Period of Disability Bobbie Jo Williams Disability Insurance Benefits (Claimant) (Wage Earner) (Social Security Number) The Appeals Council has received additional evidence which it is making part of the record. That evidence consists of the following exhibits: Exhibit 16B Request for Review received March 14, 2017 Exhibit 18E Representative Brief received April I 0, 2017 Date: November 6, 2017

Civil Cover Sheet)(jak

JS 44 (Rev. 12/12) Case 3:18-cv-00002-JM-JTK CIVIL Document 2-2 Filed 01/08/18 Page 1 of 1 COVER SHEET The JS 44 civil cover sheet and the information contained herein neither replace nor supplement the filing and service of pleadings or other papers as required by law, except as provided by local rules of court. This form, approved by the Judicial Conference of the United States in September 1974, is required for the use of the Clerk of Court for the purpose of initiating the civil docket sheet. (SEE INSTRUCTIONS ON NEXT PAGE OF THIS FORM.) I. (a) PLAINTIFFS DEFENDANTS Bobbie Jo Williams Commissioner of SSA, Office of Regional Chief Counsel. Region VJ. 1301 Young Street, Ste. A702, Dallas, TX 75202-5433 (b) County of Residence ofFirst Listed Plaintiff ~R=a~n~d~o~lpF-h~------ County of Residence of First Listed Defendant (EXCEPT JN U.S. PLAINTIFF CASES) (IN U.S. PLAINTIFF CASES ONLY) NOTE: IN LAND CONDEMNATION CASES, USE THE LOCATION OF THE TRACT OF LAND INVOLVED. (C) Attorneys (Firm Name, Address, and Telephone Number) Attorneys (IfKnown) Howard D. Olinsky, Esq., Olinsky Law Group, 300 S. State St., Ste. 420, United States Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Arkansas, P.O. Box Syracuse, NY 13202, 315-701-5780 1229, Little Rock, AR 72203 II. BASIS OF JURISDICTION (Placean ''X"inOneBoxOnly) III. CITIZENSHIP OF PRINCIPAL p ARTIES (Place an "X" in One Box for Plaintiff (For Diversity Cases Only) and One Box for Defendant) 0 1 U.S. Government 0 3 Federal Question PTF DEF PTF DEF Plaintiff (U.S. Government Not a Party) Citizen of This State 0 1 0 1 Incorporated or Principal Place 0 4 0 4 of Business In This State !!I(2 U.S. Government 0 4 Diversity Citizen of Another State 0 2 0 2 Incorporated and Principal Place 0 5 0 5 Defendant (Indicate Citizenship ofParties in Item Ill} of Business In Another State 0 3 0 3 Foreign Nation 0 6 0 6,IV. .. NATURE OF CONTRACT SUIT(Placean ''X"inOneBoxOniyJ TORTS. FORFEITURE/PENALTY BANt<uUPTCY: OTHER STATUTES I 0 110 Insurance PERSONAL INJURY PERSONAL INJURY 0 625 Drug Related Seizure o 422 Appeal 28 use 158 0 3 75 False Claims Act 0 120 Marine 0 310 Airplane 0 365 Personal Injury - of Property 21 USC 881 0 423 Withdrawal 0 400 State Reapportionment 0 130 Miller Act 0 315 Airplane Product Product Liability 0 690 Other 28 USC 157 0 410 Antitrust 0 140 Negotiable Instrument Liability 0 367 Health Care/ 0 430 Banks and Banking 0 150 Recovery of Overpayment 0 320 Assault, Libel & Pharmaceutical pu1 PF.RTY RIG" S 0 450 Commerce & Enforcement of Judgment Slander Personal Injury 0 820 Copyrights 0 460 Deportation 0 151 Medicare Act 0 330 Federal Employers' Product Liability 0 830 Patent 0 4 70 Racketeer Influenced and 0 152 Recovery of Defaulted Liability 0 368 Asbestos Personal 0 840 Trademark Corrupt Organizations Student Loans 0 340 Marine Injury Product 0 480 Consumer Credit (Excludes Veterans) 0 345 Marine Product Liability ABOR ""CIA! SEC •u•TY 0 490 Cable/Sat TV 0 153 Recovery of Overpayment Liability PERSONAL PROPERTY 0 710 Fair Labor Standards 0 861 HIA (1395ft) 0 850 Securities/Commodities/ of Veteran's Benefits 0 350 Motor Vehicle 0 370 Other Fraud Act 0 862 Black Lung (923) Exchange 0 160 Stockholders' Suits 0 355 Motor Vehicle 0 371 Truth in Lending 0 720 Labor/Management ~ 863 DIWC/DIWW (405(g)) 0 890 Other Statutory Actions 0 190 Other Contract Product Liability 0 380 Other Personal Relations 0 864 SSID Title XVI 0 891 Agricultural Acts 0 195 Contract Product Liability 0 3 60 Other Personal Property Damage 0 740 Railway Labor Act 0 865 RSI (405(g)) 0 893 Environmental Matters 0 196 Franchise Injury 0 385 Property Damage 0 751 Family and Medical 0 895 Freedom oflnformation 0 362 Personal Injury - Product Liability Leave Act Act Medical Malpractice 0 790 Other Labor Litigation 0 896 Arbitration I .. REAL PROPERTY CIVIL RIGHTS PRISONER PETITIONS · 0 791 Employee Retirement FEDERAL TAX SUITS 0 899 Administrative Procedure 0 210 Land Condemnation 0 440 Other Civil Rights Habeas Corpus: Income Security Act0 870 Taxes (U.S. Plaintiff Act/Review or Appeal of 0 220 Foreclosure 0 441 Voting 0 463 Alien Detainee or Defendant) Agency Decision 0 230 Rent Lease & Ejectrnent 0 442 Employment 0 510 Motions to Vacate 0 871 IRS-Third Party 0 950 Constitutionality of 0 240 Torts to Land 0 443 Housing/ Sentence 26 USC 7609 State Statutes 0 245 Tort Product Liability Accommodations 0 530 General 0 290 All Other Real Property 0 445 Amer. w/Disabilities - 0 535 Death Penalty ··.·IMMIGRATION Employment Other: 0 462 Naturalization Application 0 446 Amer. w/Disabilities - 0 540 Mandamus & Other 0 465 Other Immigration Other 0 550 Civil Rights Actions 0 448 Education 0 555 Prison Condition 0 560 Civil Detainee - Conditions of Confinement V. ORIGIN (Place an "X" in One Box Only))8(I Original D 2 Removed from D 3 Remanded from D 4 Reinstated or D 5 Transferred from D 6 Multidistrict Proceeding State Court Appellate Court Reopened Another District Litigation (specifY} Cite the U.S. Civil Statute under which you are filing (Do not cite jurisdictional statutes unless diversity): 42 USC 405() VI. CAUSE OF ACTION t-B-r..,..ie....,.f-de-s-cr..,..ip-t1-.o..:..n"""of..,..c-a-us-e-:- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Denial of Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. VII. REQUESTED IN 0 CHECK IF THIS IS A CLASS ACTION DEMAND $ CHECK YES only if demanded in complaint: COMPLAINT: UNDER RULE 23, F.R.Cv.P. JURYDEMAND: D Yes)&No VIII. RELATED CASE(S) (See instntctions): IF ANY DOCKET NUMBER DATE 01/05/2018 FOR OFFICE USE ONLY RECEIPT# AMOUNT APPL YING IFP JUDGE MAG.JUDGE

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Bobbie Jo Williams. Social Security Administration served on 1/18/2018.

Date: January 22, 2018 Moira Deutch: The following is in response to your January 22, 2018 request for delivery information on your Certified Mail™/RRE item number 9314869904300042282550. The delivery record shows that this item was delivered on January 19, 2018 at 6:53 am in LITTLE ROCK, AR 72202. The scanned image of the recipient information is provided below. Signature of Recipient: Address of Recipient: Thank you for selecting the Postal Service for your mailing needs. If you require additional assistance, please contact your local Post Office or postal representative. Sincerely, United States Postal Service Date: January 18, 2018 Moira Deutch: The following is in response to your January 18, 2018 request for delivery information on your Certified Mail™/RRE item number 9314869904300042282727. The delivery record shows that this item was delivered on January 18, 2018 at 1:53 pm in DALLAS, TX 75202. The scanned image of the recipient information is provided below. Signature of Recipient: Address of Recipient: Thank you for selecting the Postal Service for your mailing needs. If you require additional assistance, please contact your local Post Office or postal representative. Sincerely, United States Postal Service Date: January 18, 2018 Moira Deutch: The following is in response to your January 18, 2018 request for delivery information on your Certified Mail™/RRE item number 9314869904300042285728. The delivery record shows that this item was delivered on January 18, 2018 at 5:32 am in WASHINGTON, DC 20530. The scanned image of the recipient information is provided below. Signature of Recipient: Address of Recipient: Thank you for selecting the Postal Service for your mailing needs. If you require additional assistance, please contact your local Post Office or postal representative. Sincerely, United States Postal Service

CONSENT to Jurisdiction by U.S. Magistrate Judge. Case reassigned to Magistrate Judge Jerome T. Kearney. Signed by Judge James M. Moody Jr. on 1/22/2018.

(Post ti 112014) Notice, Consent and Reference of a Civil Action to a Magistrate Judge lllL!O U.S DISTRICT COURT UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERNlllSTRICT ARKANSAS EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS January 8, 2018 JAN 2 2 2018 Bobbie Jo Williams Plaintiff)) JA~ES W.•...M·cC· By. t. (. ~.:.\C.76(· K,,,CLERK. ' J .· EPCLERK v.) Case No. 3: J8-cv-00002 JM/JTK / 1C· · Social Security Administration Defendanl)) " NOTICE, CONSENT AND REFERENCE OF A CIVIL ACTION TO MAGISTRATE JUDGE KEARNEY (MANDATORY RESPONSE REQUIRED) Notice of a Magistrate Judge's availability. A United States Magistrate Judge of this court is available to conduct all proceedings in this civil action and to order the entry of a final judgment. The judgment may then be appealed directly to the United States Court of Appeals like any other judgment of this court. A Magistrate Judge may exercise this authority only if all parties voluntarily consent. You may consent to have your case referred to a Magistrate Judge, or you may withhold your consent without adverse substantive consequences. The name of any party withholding consent will not be revealed to any judge who may otherwise be involved with your case. You must return this form to the Clerk of Court's office within 21 days from date of this notice regardless of whether or not you are consenting to the exercise of jurisdiction by a United States Magistrate Judge. D Election to have case remain with a United States District Judge. Consent to a Magistrate Judge's authority. The following parties consent to have a United States Magistrate Judge [X] conduct all proceedings in this case including trial, the entry of final judgment, and all post-trial proceedings. Parties' printed names Dates Bobbie Jo Williams, Plaintiff / 1I 1v1201 o Social Security Admin, Defendant Reference Order IT IS ORDERED: This case is referred to a United States Magistrate Jud~to conduct all proceedings and order the entry ofa final judgment in accordance with 28 U.S.C\§ 636(c) and Fed. Civ. P. 73. - I I 1' I Date: I ~-[_ I r '0,_. - v/;1il!\,~/ ~--=--"~~~--"~"--~~~~~~~~~~~~~~- Dislrict Judge 's signature I Hon. James M. Moody Jr., U.S. District Judge Printed name and title U.S • .Department of Justice United States Attorney Eastern District ofArkansas 425 West Capilol Avenue, Suite 500 (501) 340-2600 Post Office Box 1229 Little Rock, Arkansas 72203·1229 October 31, 2017 Mr. James W. McCormack U.S. District Clerk U.S. District Courthouse 600 West Capitol Avenue Little Rock, AR 72201 RE: Consent to a United States Magistrate Judge Dear Mr. McCormack: The United States Attorney's Office, in accordance with the provisions of 28 U.S.C. §636(c) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 73, voluntarily consents to have a United States Magistrate Judge conduct any and all further proceedings for all social security disability cases filed in the Eastern District of Arkansas. Our consent applies to all orders disposing of these matters, the entry of final judgements, and post-judgement proceedings. Once all other parties have consented, the clerk's office has our blanket authorization to process the consent form without the signature ofa representative attorney for the United States. For record keeping purposes, we ask that a notification be placed on each consent form referencing this letter. Ms. Stacey E. McCord for the U.S. Attorney's Office is available to answer any questions your staff may have concerning our blanket authorization in social security disability cases.

NOTICE of Appearance by Una McGeehan on behalf of Social Security Administration

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS SOUTHERN DIVISION BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS)) Plaintiff,)) vs.) Civ. No. 3:18-cv-00002 JM JTK) NANCY A. BERRYHILL,) Acting Commissioner of the) Social Security Administration,)) Defendant) NOTICE OF APPEARANCE Defendant, Acting Commissioner of the Social Security Administration, by and through her attorney, the United States Attorney, Eastern District of Arkansas, hereby files this Notice of Appearance. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Una McGeehan appears on behalf of the Defendant. She is certified to practice before this Court and is registered in this Court's ECF system. Respectfully submitted, CODY HILAND United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas STACEY E. McCORD Assistant U.S. Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas TRACI B. DAVIS Acting Regional Chief Counsel Social Security Administration /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Attorney-in-Charge Texas Bar # 00789483 Social Security Administration Office of the General Counsel 1301 Young Street, Suite A702 Dallas, TX 75202 phone: 214-767-4110 fax: 214-767-4117 email: una.mcgeehan@ssa.gov CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I hereby certify that on March 21, 2018, I electronically transmitted the attached document to the Clerk of the Court using the ECF System for filing and transmittal of a Notice of Electronic Filing to Plaintiff's attorney, Howard D. Olinsky. /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant U.S. Attorney 2

ANSWER to {{2}} Complaint by Social Security Administration.

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS SOUTHERN DIVISION BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS, § Plaintiff, § § v. § Civil Action No. 3:18-CV-00002-JM-JTK § NANCY A. BERRYHILL, § ACTING COMMISSIONER OF § SOCIAL SECURITY, § Defendant. § § DEFENDANT'S ANSWER Defendant, Nancy A. Berryhill, Acting Commissioner (Commissioner) of Social Security, through J. Cody Hiland, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and her designated attorney-in-charge, Una McGeehan, Special Assistant United States Attorney, files this Answer to Plaintiff's Complaint. The Court has exclusive jurisdiction in this matter under section 205(g) of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 405(g). Defendant pleads as follows: 1. Defendant admits the allegation contained in paragraph 1 of Plaintiff's Complaint. 2. Defendant admits the allegation contained in paragraph 2 of Plaintiff's Complaint. 3. Defendant admits the allegation contained in paragraph 3 of Plaintiff's Complaint. 4. Defendant admits the allegation contained in paragraph 4 of Plaintiff's Complaint. 5. Defendant admits the allegation contained in paragraph 5 of Plaintiff's Complaint. 6. Paragraph 6 of Plaintiff's Complaint states a legal conclusion to which no responsive pleading is required. To the extent that the Court deems a responsive pleading is necessary, Defendant denies the same. 7. Paragraph 7 of Plaintiff's Complaint states a legal conclusion to which no responsive pleading is required. To the extent that the Court deems a responsive pleading is necessary, Defendant denies the same. 8. Paragraph 8 of Plaintiff's Complaint states a legal conclusion to which no responsive pleading is required. To the extent that the Court deems a responsive pleading is necessary, Defendant denies the same. With respect to the last paragraphs of Plaintiff's Complaint, Defendant states that this constitutes a Prayer for Relief to which no response is deemed necessary. However, if the Court requires a response, Defendant denies Plaintiff is entitled to judgment or relief sought. In response to Plaintiff's Prayer request that this case be reversed in Plaintiff's favor, or remanded for a further hearing, Defendant states that Plaintiff has not shown that reversal or remand is warranted under section 205(g) of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 405(g). With respect to Plaintiff's Prayer request for attorney fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act, should Plaintiff prevail and file an application for fees against the United States in accordance with the requirements of 28 U.S.C. § 2412, enacted as part of the Equal Access to Justice Act, the Commissioner reserves the right to oppose any award under this statute. Defendant denies all other allegations of Plaintiff's Complaint not specifically admitted. In accordance with section 205(g) of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), Defendant files as part of the answer a certified copy of the transcript of the record including the evidence upon which the findings and decisions complained of are based. Respectfully submitted, CODY HILAND United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas STACEY McCORD Assistant United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas TRACI B. DAVIS Acting Regional Chief Counsel Social Security Administration /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney Attorney-in-Charge Texas State Bar 00789483 Office of the General Counsel 1301 Young Street, Suite A702 Dallas, Texas 75202 (214) 767-4110 (214) 767-4117 Fax Una.McGeehan@ssa.gov CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I hereby certify that on March 21, 2018, I electronically transmitted the attached document to the Clerk of the Court using the ECF's system for filing and transmittal of the Answer to Plaintiff's Attorneys, Howard D. Olinsky, of the Olinsky Law Group, ECF registrants. /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney

NOTICE by Social Security Administration

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS SOUTHERN DIVISION BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS, § Plaintiff, § § v. § Civil Action No. 3:18-CV-00002-JM-JTK § NANCY A. BERRYHILL, § ACTING COMMISSIONER OF § SOCIAL SECURITY, § Defendant. § DEFENDANT'S NOTICE OF CONVENTIONAL FILING OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE TRANSCRIPT Defendant, Nancy A. Berryhill, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, through J. Cody Hiland, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, hereby notices the court that the United States Attorney's Office will file the certified administrative record of the administrative proceeding in this case in accordance with section 205(g) of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), and serve a copy of the transcript on Plaintiff's attorneys. Respectfully submitted, CODY HILAND United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas STACEY McCORD Assistant United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas TRACI B. DAVIS Acting Regional Chief Counsel Social Security Administration /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney Attorney-in-Charge Texas State Bar 00789483 Office of the General Counsel 1301 Young Street, Suite A702 Dallas, Texas 75202 (214) 767-4110 (214) 767-4117 Fax Una.McGeehan@ssa.gov CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I hereby certify that on March 21, 2018, I electronically transmitted the attached document to the Clerk of the Court using the ECF's system for filing the transmittal of a Notice of Electronic Filing to Plaintiff's attorneys, Howard D. Olinsky, of the Olinsky Law Group, ECF registrants. /s/ Una McGeehan UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney

SCHEDULING ORDER: Plaintiff's Brief due by 5/4/2018. Defendant's Brief due within 42 days of the date Plaintiff's Brief is served. Signed at the Direction of the Court on 03/23/2018.

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS JONESBORO DIVISION BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS PLAINTIFF v. Case No. 3:18-cv-00002-JTK SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION DEFENDANT SCHEDULING ORDER Defendant has filed an answer and transcript of the administrative proceedings. Plaintiff must file a brief on or before Friday, May 4, 2018. The brief must identify specific points for appeal. Plaintiff's failure to file a timely brief may result in dismissal for failure to prosecute. Defendant must file a brief within forty-two (42) days of the date Plaintiff's brief is served. Defendant's brief must respond to the issues raised in Plaintiff's brief and may include additional relevant issues. Each party must serve a copy of their brief on the opposing party the day of filing and file a certificate of service with the brief. Briefs should provide a history of the administrative proceedings and statement of facts, and identify specific points for appeal together with relevant law and argument. They should include citations of legal authority in support of arguments made. These citations should include specific page references within the case where the cited point is discussed. Briefs should also include citations to referenced portions of the transcript supporting the party's arguments. IT IS SO ORDERED THIS 23rd day of March, 2018. AT THE DIRECTION OF THE COURT JAMES W. McCORMACK, CLERK By /s/LaShawn M. Coleman Deputy Clerk

PLAINTIFF'S BRIEF filed by Bobbie Jo Williams. Defendant Brief due by 6/15/2018

0 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS)) Plaintiff)) vs.) CIVIL ACTION NO. 3:18-CV-00002) NANCY A. BERRYHILL,) U.S. Magistrate Judge Jerome T. Kearney DEPUTY COMMISSIONER) FOR OPERATIONS,) performing the duties and functions) not reserved to the Commissioner) of Social Security)) Defendant) PLAINTIFF'S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN SUPPORT OF A SOCIAL SECURITY APPEAL ISSUES PRESENTED FOR REVIEW 1. The ALJ's determination as to Plaintiff's physical impairment and capacity is not supported by substantial evidence because the ALJ does not rely on, nor had he requested the rendering of, an examining opinion from a health care professional as to Plaintiff's capabilities. 2. The ALJ's determination as to Plaintiff's mental impairment and capacity is not supported by substantial evidence because A) he does not reconcile his opinion with the great weight afforded Dr. Adams' opinion and he misconstrues the evidence of Plaintiff's mental impairments, and B) the ALJ does not consider the application of Listing 12.06 under the rules applicable at the time of the decision. STATEMENT OF THE CASE On November 12, 2015, Bobbie Jo Williams ("Plaintiff") filed an application for Title II Disability Insurance Benefits alleging disability as of September 15, 2015. Administrative Transcript ("Tr.") 52-53. Subsequently, Plaintiff successfully moved to amend the alleged onset date to April 21, 2015. Tr. 29-30. She alleged disability due to fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, and osteoarthritis. Tr. 53. Plaintiff's claim was denied initially on January 8, 2016 (Tr. 52), and 1 0 on reconsideration February 9, 2016 (Tr. 66). Plaintiff filed a written request for a hearing (Tr. 95), and a hearing was held January 10, 2017 before Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") Kevin Alexander (Tr. 26-51). The ALJ issued an unfavorable decision dated March 13, 2017. Tr. 10-21. In his decision, the ALJ found that Plaintiff has not engaged in substantial gainful activity since the amended alleged onset date and that she suffers from the following severe impairments: lumbar degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, obesity, hypothyroidism, post-traumatic stress disorder ("PTSD"), and anxiety disorder. Tr. 12. He also found that no impairment or combination of impairments met or medically equaled an impairment listed at 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P, App'x 1. Tr. 12. The ALJ assessed Plaintiff to have a residual functional capacity ("RFC") to perform light work, except she is limited to: occasional climbing of ramps and stairs, ladders, ropes or scaffolds and not more than occasional balance, stoop, kneel, crouch, and crawl. The work must be limited to work with simple, routine, and repetitive tasks, where the supervision is simple, direct, and concrete, and not more than occasional changes to the work place setting, SVP 1 or 2 jobs that could be learned within 30 days. Tr. 14. The ALJ found that Plaintiff was not capable of engaging in past relevant work, but he did find that she could perform work as a production assembler and a cashier II. Tr. 20-21. The ALJ found the Plaintiff not disabled. Tr. 21. The Appeals Council denied review on November 6, 2017, making the ALJ decision the final Agency decision. Tr. 1. This suit followed. This court has jurisdiction under 42 U.S.C. §405(g). STATEMENT OF FACTS a) Plaintiff's Age, Education, and Work Experience Plaintiff was 42 years old on the amended alleged onset date and 44 years old on the date of the ALJ's decision. Tr. 53. Plaintiff graduated from high school. Tr. 31. Plaintiff has past relevant work experience as a metal machine tender and as a school custodian. Tr. 47. 2 0 b) Medical Record Evidence Plaintiff saw a chiropractor on April 4, 2014. Tr. 271. She reported neck, mid-back, low back, and hip/leg pain. Tr. 271. The chiropractor observed tenderness at C1, C2, and L5. Tr. 271. Plaintiff saw the chiropractor throughout 2014, through to March 5, 2015, with examinations revealing similar findings. Tr. 271-275. Plaintiff went to the emergency room on September 5, 2014 after she twisted her back at work. Tr. 283. She reported low right back pain extending to the tailbone and posterior hip. Tr. 283. Her medications included carisoprodol, hydrocodone, and levothyroxine. Tr. 238. Exam revealed muscle weakness (three of five) in the bilateral upper and lower extremities and pain in the right sacroiliac joint. Tr. 285. The discharge diagnosis was strain of the lumbar region. Tr. 286. An x-ray of the same date revealed severe loss of disc height at L4-L5 with associated endplate degenerative change and facet hypertophic change. Tr. 288. Plaintiff established primary care with Jessica Wood, APRN on September 26, 2014. Tr. 342. Plaintiff reported that she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia thirteen years prior at a pain management center in Missouri. Tr. 343. She was given Gabapentin, and she had been more recently switched to hydrocodone (she had also tried Mobic). Tr. 343. She described the location as the neck mid-back, lower back, and legs. Tr. 343. She reported worsening moderate fatigue, numbness/tingling in the extremities, arthralgias, joint pain, back pain, and swelling in the extremities, notably her left knee swells. Tr. 344. Exam revealed trochanter bursa pain, crepitus of the bilateral knees, and tenderness of the sacroiliac joint, bilateral knees, cervical spine, and lumbosacral spine. Tr. 344. Nurse Wood also noted soft tissue tenderpoints at the paracervical region, upper/medial scapular border, lower/medial scapular border, mid trapezius, paralumbar region, upper/outer buttock, trochanteric bursa, and medial knees. Tr. 344. Nurse Wood assessed 3 0 Plaintiff's condition as multiple joint pain, hypothyroidism, and malaise/fatigue. Tr. 344-45. She prescribed tramadol, levothyroxine, and gabapentin. Tr. 344-45. A thyroid ultrasound dated October 7, 2014 revealed two small hypoechoic nodules (0.6 cm) in the right lobe of the thyroid. Tr. 281. A second ultrasound dated April 29, 2015 showed no change. Tr. 277. On October 31, 2014, Plaintiff saw otolaryngologist Shane Smith, M.D. concerning her thyroid. Tr. 312. Plaintiff reported trouble swallowing. Tr. 312. Dr. Smith diagnosed her with hypothyroidism and a multinodular goiter, nontoxic. Tr. 314. Plaintiff was taking synthroid. Tr. 312. Plaintiff returned to Nurse Wood on December 12, 2014. Tr. 339. Plaintiff continued to report worsening fatigue, as well as arthralgias, joint pain and back pain at a severity of five of ten. Tr. 340. Exam revealed tenderness and limited range of motion in the bilateral knees and lumbosacral spine. Tr. 341. Additionally, Nurse Wood documented a soft tissue tenderpoint on the upper/outer buttocks. Tr. 341. Her assessment was joint pain in multiple sites and hypothyroidism. Tr. 341. January 28, 2015, Plaintiff reported continued symptoms to Nurse Wood. Tr. 335-38. Nurse Wood's assessment was hypothyroidism, insomnia, and multiple joint pain. Tr. 337-38. Plaintiff returned April 6, 2015 with a tooth abscess and continued chronic intermittent arthralgias and back pain. Tr. 332-34. Plaintiff noted her pain was worse with moving and bending. Tr. 334. Nurse Wood continued to observe tenderness and limited range of motion in Plaintiff's joints. Tr. 334. On October 28, 2015, Plaintiff saw Randi Perry, APRN and reported tiredness, insomnia, and joint and soft tissue pain. Tr. 329-30. Exam revealed musculoskeletal tenderness. Tr. 331. 4 0 Nurse Perry assessed Plaintiff's condition to include hypothyroidism, multiple joint pain and insomnia, and she prescribed diclofenac, tramadol, and trazodone. Tr. 331. Plaintiff returned to Nurse Perry on February 1, 2016 complaining of dizziness and joint pain. Tr. 415. Plaintiff had been experiencing dizziness with unsteadiness and limb weakness, resulting in falls. Tr. 415. She continued to report bilateral, frequent joint pain, which was aggravated by range of motion. Tr. 415. The review of systems also noted fatigue, muscle ache and weakness, and arthralgias. Tr. 415. Exam continued to reveal joint tenderness. Tr. 416. Nurse Perry's assessment was neck pain/cervicalgia, dizziness, and multiple joint pain (locations unspecified), and she renewed Plaintiff's prescriptions for diclofenac and tramadol. Tr. 416. c) Opinion Evidence On February 1, 2016, Catherine Hubbard Adams, Ph.D. conducted a consultative examination of the Plaintiff. Tr. 408-13. Plaintiff reported that she had been diagnosed with PTSD in December of 2010 as a result of molestation occurring from age seven to age fourteen and the murder of her mother when Plaintiff was age sixteen. Tr. 408. Plaintiff was married for eight years to an abusive, alcoholic husband who committed suicide in 2008. Tr. 408. Plaintiff reported difficulty sleeping with nightmares and flashbacks occurring several times a week. Tr. 408. She also reported panic attacks, more often in crowded places. Tr. 408. Plaintiff has difficulty managing money, and though she does some cleaning and cooking, she does receive assistance from her son. Tr. 409. Plaintiff did receive mental health treatment with her family after her husband's suicide. Tr. 409. Dr. Adams noted that Plaintiff is prescribed Gabapentin and Tramadol with the side effect of nausea. Tr. 409. Dr. Adams observed a nervous mood and congruent affect. Tr. 410. 5 0 Dr. Adams noted Plaintiff's report of psychotic auditory hallucinations,1 which Dr. Adams stated were "likely" due to sleep deprivation. Tr. 408. Dr. Adams remarked: "Claimant reported symptoms of PTSD and this was diagnosed today. She also has some symptoms of hallucinations that are likely due to Insomnia that accompanies PTSD and these are noted below as well." Tr. 410. Dr. Adams diagnoses included PTSD, insomnia related to PTSD, and Psychotic Disorder due to PTSD. Tr. 411. Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiffs "difficulties seem to interfere with age-appropriate ADLs including social relationships, grocery shopping, and financial management." Tr. 411. She further opined that Plaintiff "seems to have moderate difficulty coping with work-type demands" and "seems to have moderate difficulty sustaining persistence in completing tasks." Tr. 411. Moreover, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff, "seems to have moderate difficulty completing tasks within an acceptable timeframe." Tr. 411. Finally, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff is unable to manage funds without assistance. Tr. 412. d) Hearing Testimony A hearing was held January 10, 2017 before ALJ Alexander (Tr. 26-51), at which Plaintiff testified as follows: She resigned from her last work attempt due to that fact that she "was missing some days because of the pain" and she "would go home crying every day." Tr. 33. She also struggled to maintain a balance of work and personal life as work caused her fatigue— "the job was taking everything out of me." Tr. 33. She attempts to prevent worsening depression by volunteering when she can do so. Tr. 33-34. She spends a few hours at the Salvation Army store a few times a week hanging up clothes. Tr. 33-34. 1 While she stated there was no evidence of hallucinations (Tr. 410 point 7), the Plaintiff's report of voices is appropriately described as a hallucination (Tr. 410 last paragraph). Perhaps Dr. Adams meant that she did not witness a hallucination. 6 0 Plaintiff reported that she has difficulty sleeping, which causes her to have physical and mental difficulty waking and beginning the day. Tr. 34. Plaintiff was diagnosed with PTSD. Tr. 39. Plaintiff explained that her sleep difficulties are related to her PTSD: "I had several traumatic things happen to me and I have this thing where I think I can't ever get relaxed because something bad's going to happen. It's just going to happen. Something bad's going to happen again." Tr. 39-40. Her fears are worst at night. Tr. 40. Plaintiff testified that she experiences "flare-ups" of fibromyalgia that brings her to tears "quite a bit." Tr. 35. The effectiveness of Plaintiff's medication depends on the severity of the flare-up. Tr. 36. Plaintiff experiences constant pain (Tr. 41), and the pain is typically at a severity of five or six of ten (Tr. 42). The pain extends from head to toe. Tr. 42. She compared the pain to having been hit by a bat "everywhere." Tr. 42. A bad flare-up can last two or three days, especially when she has been doing too much. Tr. 42. Plaintiff tries to push herself to accomplish tasks like housework or shopping, but she will have "a lot of pain" in the days following such an attempt. Tr. 44-45. Regarding her living situation, Plaintiff explained that she lives with her sixteen-year-old son, her seventeen-year-old step daughter, and her husband, but her husband works away from home. Tr. 37. Plaintiff has two older children that live in Missouri who visit when they can. Tr. 38. Plaintiff can help with some house cleaning "maybe once a week" but then she will "pay for it." Tr. 43. She can drive "short distances" but explained that it hurts to sit for a long drive. Tr. 31. Plaintiff does not engage in hygiene activities as much as she would like. Tr. 37. She explained that "it's painful for me to get a shower" and "it hurts to brush my hair[.]" Tr. 37-38. Her children do their own laundry, and her son helps with cleaning and shopping. Tr. 38. 7 0 Plaintiff estimated that she could walk about fifteen minutes before pain would set in. Tr. 41. Pain sets in with sitting or standing in one place for about five minutes. Tr. 40-41. Plaintiff was in pain during the interview. Tr. 40. Plaintiff also noted that she had previously attempted work as a cashier, but she could not handle the standing. Tr. 50. In the past, when Plaintiff had insurance, she took Cymbalta for her mental difficulties. Tr. 45. Plaintiff sincerely desires to seek further treatment, but she is unable to afford Cymbalta or other treatment. Tr. 45. A vocational expert ("VE") testified at the hearing. Tr. 46-50. The VE testified that someone with Plaintiff's age, education, and work experience, and with the ALJ's assessed RFC, could perform work as a production assembler (DOT No. 706.687-010) and a cashier II (DOT No. 211.462-010). The entire hearing lasted thirty-six minutes (Tr. 28, 51), and Plaintiff did stand up during the hearing (Tr. 46). ARGUMENT Pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), this court may review the record to determine whether the Commissioner applied proper legal standards and whether substantial evidence supports the final agency decision to deny Plaintiff benefits. Substantial evidence has been defined as more than a mere scintilla. It means such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept to support such a conclusion. Richardson v. Perales, 402 U.S. 389, 401 (1972); Consolidated Edison Co. v. NLRB, 305 U.S. 229 (1938). "The court considers both evidence which supports the Commissioner's decision and evidence that detracts from it. The court 'must search the record for evidence contradicting the [Commissioner's] decision and give that evidence appropriate weight when determining whether the overall evidence in support is substantial.'" 8 0 Epting v. Berryhill, No. 16-CV-3118-LTS, 2017 WL 4836311, at *1 (N.D. Iowa Oct. 25, 2017) (quoting Baldwin v. Barnhart, 349 F.3d 549, 555 (8th Cir. 2003)) (citing Kluesner v. Astrue, 607 F.3d 533, 536 (8th Cir. 2010); Cline v. Sullivan, 939 F.2d 560, 564 (8th Cir. 1991)). 1. The ALJ's determination as to Plaintiff's physical impairment and capacity is not supported by substantial evidence because the ALJ does not rely on, nor had he requested the rendering of, an examining opinion from a health care professional as to Plaintiff's capabilities. The ALJ gave "great weight" to the physical findings of the State Agency non-examining consultants, "because the consultants reviewed the file and they have expertise in their fields. The undersigned finds the physical opinions are consistent with the evidence as a whole with regard to the overall nature and severity of symptoms and associated impairments." Tr. 19. There were no examining consultant opinions, much less treating opinions, of Plaintiff's physical condition. Generally, the Social Security Administration ("SSA") gives more weight to the medical opinion of a source who has examined the Plaintiff than to the medical opinion of a medical source who has not examined her. 20 C.F.R. § 404.1527(c)(1). In order to determine what weight to assign the opinion, the ALJ must consider the following factors: length, nature, and extent of the treating relationship; supportability of the opinion; consistency of the opinion with other evidence in the record; the specialization of the source; and any other factors that support or contradict the opinion. 20 C.F.R. § 404.1527(c)(2)-(6). The decision must contain specific reasons supported by evidence in the record for the weight given to an opinion. Social Security Ruling ("SSR") 96-2p; c.f. 20 C.F.R. § 404.1527(f)(2). The opinion of non-treating, non-examining physicians normally do not constitute substantial evidence to support an RFC assessment. Hames v. Colvin, No. 3:14-CV-00238 JTK, 2015 WL 6123221, at *3 (E.D. Ark. Oct. 16, 2015) (citing Nevland v. Apfel, 204 F.3d 853, 858 9 0 (8th Cir.2000) ("The ALJ relied on the opinions of non-treating, non-examining physicians who reviewed the reports of the treating physicians to form an opinion of Nevland's RFC. In our opinion, this does not satisfy the ALJ's duty to fully and fairly develop the record. The opinions of doctors who have not examined the claimant ordinarily do not constitute substantial evidence on the record as a whole." [not quoted in Hames])); Marks v. Berryhill, No. 3:16-CV-169-BD, 2017 WL 2219998, at *2 (E.D. Ark. May 19, 2017); Cole v. Colvin, No. 3:15-CV-00127-JTR, 2016 WL 4076837, at *3 (E.D. Ark. Aug. 1, 2016). "It is only necessary to recontact treating physicians or order consultative examinations where the record is undeveloped on a critical issue." Cole, 2016 WL 4076837, at *2. In Cole, the Plaintiff's "testimony and reported activities of daily living [stood] in contrast to the RFC assessment, and no treating physician [had] expressed an opinion that his condition [had] improved or that he [was] capable of any type of productive activity." Cole, 2016 WL 4076837, at *3. "Because symptoms sometimes suggest a greater severity of impairment than can be shown by objective medical evidence alone," the ALJ must carefully consider any other information Plaintiff may submit about her symptoms. 20 C.F.R. §§ 404.1529(c)(3)-(4). "[I]n the Eighth Circuit, an ALJ may not discredit a claimant's subjective allegations of pain, discomfort or other disabling limitations simply because there is a lack of objective evidence; instead, the ALJ may only discredit subjective complaints if they are inconsistent with the record as a whole." Huisman v. Astrue, 707 F. Supp. 2d 842, 853 (N.D. Iowa 2010) (citing Hinchey v. Shalala, 29 F.3d 428, 432 (8th Cir.1994); Bishop v. Sullivan, 900 F.2d 1259, 1262 (8th Cir.1990); Polaski v. Heckler, 739 F.2d 1320, 1322 (8th Cir.1984)). The Court in Huisman went on to say: In addition, the ALJ's RFC assessment failed to consider the consequences of chronic pain from fibromyalgia, which the courts 10 0 have described as "a common, but elusive and mysterious, disease, much like chronic fatigue syndrome.... Its cause or causes are unknown, there is no cure, and, of greatest importance to disability law, its symptoms are entirely subjective." Sarchet v. Chater, 78 F.3d 305, 306 (7th Cir.1996). The Eighth Circuit has held, "in the context of a fibromyalgia case, that [even] the ability to engage in activities such as cooking, cleaning, and hobbies, does not constitute substantial evidence of the ability to engage in substantial gainful activity." Brosnahan v. Barnhart, 336 F.3d 671, 677 (8th Cir.2003) (citing Kelley v. Callahan, 133 F.3d 583, 588–89 (8th Cir.1998)). Huisman, 707 F. Supp. 2d at 854–55. Another Court has explained: Of particular concern to the undersigned is the ALJ's treatment of the evidence concerning Plaintiff's fibromyalgia and narcolepsy. "Fibromyalgia is a common nonarticular disorder of unknown cause characterized by generalized aching (sometimes severe); widespread tenderness of muscles, areas around tendon insertions, and adjacent soft tissues; muscle stiffness; fatigue; and poor sleep." The Merck Manual, Fibromyalgia,http://www.merckmanuals.com/ professional/musculoskeletal_and_connective_tissue_disorders/bur sa_muscle_and_tendon_disorders/fibromyalgia.html?qt=fibromyal gia & alt=sh (last accessed August 5, 2013). Any fibromuscular tissues may be involved, but fibromyalgia is especially prevalent in the occiput, neck, shoulders, thorax, low back, and thighs. Id. The symptoms of fibromyalgia are typically generalized, and can be exacerbated by environmental or emotional stress, poor sleep, trauma, exposure to dampness or cold, or by a physician who implies that the disorder is "all in the head." Id. There are, however, no laboratory tests for the presence or severity of fibromyalgia, and treatment includes exercise, local heat, stress management, drugs to improve sleep, and analgesics. Id. Barton v. Astrue, No. 12-2079, 2013 WL 4042834, at *2 (W.D. Ark. Aug. 8, 2013). The SSA has issued SSR 12-2p concerning the evaluation of fibromyalgia. A person can be diagnosed, in the eyes of the SSA, if they meet either of the two tests listed in the SSR. Test "II.A" requires widespread pain, eleven positive tenderpoints, and evidence excluding other potential causes. Test "II.B" requires widespread pain, repeated manifestations of six fibromyalgia symptoms (e.g. fatigue, waking unrefreshed, depression, anxiety, irritable bowel), and evidence excluding other potential causes. The SSA has even ruled that it "may purchase a 11 0 [consultative examination] to help [the ALJ] assess the severity and functional effects of medically determined [fibromyalgia] or any other impairment(s)." SSR 12-2p, III.C.2.b. At bar, the only professional opinion as to Plaintiff's physical capacity is from the State Agency consultants. Tr. 52-84. In these documents, the consultants assert that "Fibromyalgia has never been [diagnosed]" even though there have been demonstrated tenderpoints. Tr. 58. However, the Plaintiff is not conjuring her assessment of fibromyalgia out of thin air; Plaintiff was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in Missouri about a decade prior to the visits recorded in the Transcript. Tr. 343. Moreover, numerous records evidence Plaintiff's struggles with her joints above and below the waist (Tr. 329-31, 334, 338, 344, 415-16), including upper and lower extremity weakness (Tr. 285) and variable tenderpoints (Tr. 341, 344). Her pain is not localized to one area. On the one hand, the ALJ found Plaintiff suffered from the severe impairment of fibromyalgia. Tr. 12. On the other hand, the ALJ found that the record "fails to satisfy the requirements of Social Security Ruling 12-2p…[,]" and "fails to support a history of widespread pain" Tr. 17. As shown above, Plaintiff has a history of widespread pain, from the scapulae and trapezius (Tr. 344) to the hips and buttocks (Tr. 271, 283, 344). For a specific tenderpoint analysis, a fully developed record should include an examining opinion. However, Plaintiff has shown to a degree, that has not been rebutted by substantial evidence, that she does have symptoms of fibromyalgia (See SSR 12-2p,II.B.2.). Plaintiff has consistently reported fatigue. E.g. Tr. 312, 330, 337, 340, 415. Plaintiff has demonstrated anxiety, such that the ALJ included anxiety disorder as a severe impairment. Tr. 12. Plaintiff has complained of Irritable Bowel. Tr. 43. Weakness and consequential inhibited activity are seen as 12 0 noted below. There is sufficient information to warrant a consultative exam, or, at the very least, an inquiry into the Missouri diagnosis (Tr. 343). Cole, 2016 WL 4076837, at *2. Evidence of the limitations produced by Plaintiff's fibromyalgia can be seen in her activities of daily living. Plaintiff testified, and recorded in function reports, that her son and husband help with chores. Tr. 38, 209. Moreover, she can help with some house cleaning "maybe once a week" but then she will "pay for it." Tr. 43, c.f. 210, 245-46. Most of the time the children prepare their own food. Tr. 210. Her children do their own laundry, and her son helps with cleaning and shopping. Tr. 38. Her son's girlfriend drives him to school. Tr. 37. Plaintiff does not engage in hygiene activities as much as she would like. Tr. 37. She explained that "it's painful for me to get a shower" and "it hurts to brush my hair[.]" Tr. 37-38, c.f. 244-45. As for "socializing with family," (see Tr. 13) Plaintiff has two older children that live in Missouri who call and visit when they can. Tr. 38, 212. The record amply supports the fact that Plaintiff is limited. The only professional opinion as to Plaintiff's physical capacity is from non-examining sources who did not acknowledge the evidence of Plaintiff's fibromyalgia, nor have an opportunity to examine the Plaintiff personally to gather the information elicited at the hearing. The ALJ was concerned that other diagnoses (spinal conditions) were not ruled out (T 17 fourth full paragraph), yet he had just concluded in the immediately preceding paragraph that the evidence of back problems was not sufficient to support Plaintiff's allegations of limitation (T 17 third full paragraph). The only adequate way to determine Plaintiff's physical condition, in terms of her capability, is to seek an informed professional opinion. Cole, 2016 WL 4076837, at *3. The peculiar absence of any examining opinion undermines the establishment of a reliable RFC. There is sufficient evidence, and authority (e.g. SSR 12-2p) for the ALJ to order a 13 0 consultative exam. There is insufficient evidence to safely conclude that Plaintiff is not disabled. The RFC is unsupported by substantial evidence due to the lack of examining opinion concerning Plaintiff's physical condition. Therefore, it is respectfully requested that the decision of the ALJ be vacated and the case be remanded for further proceedings, including a de novo hearing and decision. 2. The ALJ's determination as to Plaintiff's mental impairment and capacity is not supported by substantial evidence because A) he does not reconcile his opinion with the great weight afforded Dr. Adams' opinion and he misconstrues the evidence of Plaintiff's mental impairments, and B) the ALJ does not consider the application of Listing 12.06 under the rules applicable at the time of the decision. The ALJ afforded great weight to the opinion of Dr. Adams. However, the ALJ also discounted Dr. Adams conclusion as to Plaintiff's social functioning without citing to substantial evidence which contradicts the opinion. Moreover, in making his finding at Step Three of the sequential evaluation process (20 C.F.R. §404.1520(a)(4)), the ALJ stated that he had considered Listings 12.06 and 12.15. Tr. 13. It should be noted that Listing 12.15 was not in effect at the time of the decision.2 The ALJ refers to the "area of understanding, remembering, or applying information," the "area of interacting with others," and the "area of adapting or managing oneself," all of which refer to the new Listings, and were not the standard at the time of this decision. a) The ALJ does not reconcile his opinion with the great weight afforded Dr. Adams' opinion. "[I]f the RFC assessment conflicts with an opinion from a medical source, the adjudicator must explain why the opinion was not adopted." SSR 96-8p. "Further, the ALJ must base the assessment on all of the relevant evidence and build 'an accurate and logical bridge' between the 2 The Listings effective at the time of the decision can be found at POMS DI 34132.013. All references herein refer to these listings unless otherwise stated. 14 0 evidence and his decision." Douglas v. Colvin, No. 3:15-CV-03006-MEF, 2016 WL 1048063, at *3 (W.D. Ark. Mar. 11, 2016) (citing St. Clair v. Colvin, 2013 WL 4400832, at *2 (W.D. MO., Aug. 14, 2013); Sarchet v. Chater, 78 F.3d 305, 307 (7th Cir. 1996)). "Non-examining source opinions do not normally constitute substantial evidence when they directly conflict with the opinions of treating or examining sources." Epting, 2017 WL 4836311, at *6 (Citing Shontos v. Barnhart, 328 F.3d 418, 427 (8th Cir. 2003)). The ALJ noted that he discounted Dr. Adams' opinion as to socialization because Plaintiff, "does socialize with family, she grocery shops, and she pays bills." Tr. 13. The ALJ conversely stated: The undersigned gives Dr. Adams' opinion great weight as her opinion is supported by objective diagnostic testing, her trained observations, an impartial analysis of the evidentiary evidence of record and a well-reasoned conclusion. She documented and attempted to resolve contradictions with input from the claimant and analyzed the claimant's statements in view of the claimant's daily activities, history and previous work experience. Her opinion is based on a thorough examination of the claimant, it is within her area of expertise and is consistent with the other evidence of record. Tr. 19. Furthermore, concerning the non-examining State Agency psychological consultants, the ALJ stated: "However, the undersigned finds that the medical evidence of record as a whole supports the conclusion that the claimant's mental residual functional capacity is more limited than determined by the state agency experts." Tr. 19. In short, the ALJ either relied upon Dr. Adams' opinion, editing it without substantial evidence, or he relied upon his personal analysis of progress notes in forming an opinion as to capacity. Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff's "difficulties seem to interfere with age-appropriate ADLs including social relationships, grocery shopping, and financial management." Tr. 411. She further opined that Plaintiff "seems to have moderate difficulty coping with work-type demands" and "seems to have moderate difficulty sustaining persistence in completing tasks." Tr. 411. 15 0 Moreover, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff, "seems to have moderate difficulty completing tasks within an acceptable timeframe." Tr. 411. Finally, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff is unable to manage funds without assistance. Tr. 412. Concerning social function, the ALJ found that Plaintiff has a moderate difficulty citing to the fact that "she reported she lived with her husband and two children" and she attends her son's basketball games. Tr. 13—c.f. Tr. 248 where Plaintiff states she "sometimes" attends her son's games which occur twice a week.3 The ALJ notes that Dr. Adams noted in her report that Plaintiff's interactions were "mostly socially adequate" and that she communicated "in a manner that was [mostly] effective and intelligible." Tr. 13, bracketed portion from Tr. 411. This is not sufficient evidence to disregard Dr. Adams' professional opinion that Plaintiff's difficulties interfere with social relationships. Tr. 411. Plaintiff has diagnosable PTSD and associated insomnia and psychotic disorder. Tr. 411. In rejecting the severity of Plaintiff's PTSD, the ALJ stated: [Plaintiff] has not treated for PTSD since 2010. She takes no psychotropic medications for the condition. The evidence fails to show that the claimant's daily activities are severely restricted due to emotional causes and there is no significant deficit in her ability to function socially. The record does not show any significant level of deficiencies of concentration, persistence or pace; or any actual episodes of deterioration or decompensation in work settings (Exhibit 5F). Tr. 18. Plaintiff specifically testified that she does not have the money to continue on psychotropic medications or other treatment for her mental health. Tr. 45. She sincerely desires to have treatment. Tr. 45. Plaintiff reported panic attacks. Tr. 408. Plaintiff reported difficulty sleeping with nightmares and flashbacks occurring several times a week. Tr. 408. Dr. Adams 3 It might appear unclear whether Plaintiff attends twice a week or sometimes, but that should have been clarified at the hearing, not in the decision. 16 0 noted Plaintiff's report of psychotic auditory hallucinations. Tr. 408. Also, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff has moderate difficulty coping with work-type demands sustaining persistence in completing tasks. Tr. 411. Moreover, Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff, "seems to have moderate difficulty completing tasks within an acceptable timeframe." Tr. 411. The ALJ himself stated that Dr. Adams' opinion "is based on a thorough examination of the claimant, it is within her area of expertise and is consistent with the other evidence of record." Tr. 19. Therefore it is unclear why the ALJ insists that Plaintiff's impediments to social function and her PTSD are not as severe as Dr. Adams opined. b) The ALJ did not consider the application of Listing 12.06 under the rules applicable at the time of the decision. Listing 12.06 dictates that an anxiety related disorder is sufficiently severe to find disability if the Plaintiff has documented findings of either *** 3) Recurrent severe panic attacks manifested by a sudden unpredictable onset of intense apprehension, fear, terror and sense of impending doom occurring on the average of at least once a week; or *** 5) Recurrent and intrusive recollections of a traumatic experience, which are a source of marked distress; and this finding results in two of the following: i. Marked restriction of activities of daily living; or ii. Marked difficulties in maintaining social functioning; or iii. Marked difficulties in maintaining concentration, persistence, or pace; or iv. Repeated episodes of decompensation…. Dr. Adams did record Plaintiff's report of panic attacks and her report of nightmares and flashbacks occurring several times a week, and Dr. Adams concluded in her professional opinion that Plaintiff has PTSD with related psychotic disorder and insomnia. Tr. 408, 411. Dr. Adams 17 0 also recorded that Plaintiff reported difficulty sleeping and auditory hallucinations. Tr. 408. While Dr. Adams said that the auditory hallucinations were likely due to sleep deprivation (Tr. 408), Dr. Adams also said that Plaintiff "also has some symptoms of hallucinations that are likely due to Insomnia that accompanies PTSD and these are noted below as well." Tr. 410. Additionally, Plaintiff testified, "I had several traumatic things happen to me and I have this thing where I think I can't ever get relaxed because something bad's going to happen. It's just going to happen. Something bad's going to happen again." Tr. 39-40, c.f. 250). Plaintiff has a "sense of impending doom." Listing 12.06. In order to properly categorize Plaintiff's condition into sub-point 3) or 5) above, the ALJ would need to seek professional clarification. As for sub-points i to iv, Plaintiff arguably has marked limitation in her ability to maintain social functioning. While the ALJ twice cites to Plaintiff's ability to "socialize" with her family (Tr. 13), this information would only be relevant if Plaintiff were able to work at a so- called "family business." The ALJ places emphasis on the fact that Plaintiff sometimes goes to the store and to see her son play basketball. T 13. However, she does not do these activities so much anymore. Tr. 38, 248. While this is partly due to physical pain (Tr. 249), Dr. Adams found in her professional opinion that Plaintiff was socially limited, and from the information available one is left to concluded that PTSD symptoms (her "sense of impending doom") may play a significant role in such limitation. A clarification of the extent of Plaintiff's PTSD symptoms should be made at a medical consultation and not in camera by the ALJ. Moreover Plaintiff arguably has marked limitation in her ability to maintain concentration, persistence, or pace. Although Dr. Adams uses the term "moderate" in her assessment, she does not define the term. Compare Edwards v. Astrue, No. CIV. 11-3137, 2012 WL 5383204, at *4 (W.D. Ark. Oct. 4, 2012), report and recommendation adopted, No. 3:11- 18 0 CV-03137, 2012 WL 5383256 (W.D. Ark. Nov. 1, 2012). Dr. Adams is not a State Agency consultant and did not express in her opinion that she understood the Social Security terms of art moderate and marked. Thus when Dr. Adams opined that Plaintiff "seems to have moderate difficulty coping with work-type demands" and "seems to have moderate difficulty sustaining persistence in completing tasks" (Tr. 411), this can only be read as evidence of the problem rising to a non-severe level. Moreover, interpreting Dr. Adams analysis as indicating a less than severe limitation better incorporates her opinion that Plaintiff is unable to manage funds without assistance. Tr. 412. Plaintiff arguably meets the requirements of Listing 12.06, and the evidence supporting a contrary conclusion is not substantial. Basketball games and grocery store visits are not a sufficient basis to conclude that the professional opinion of a psychologist should be discounted, especially when that very opinion was given great weight by the ALJ. Therefore, it is respectfully requested that the decision of the ALJ be vacated and the case be remanded for further proceedings, including a de novo hearing and decision. CONCLUSION For the foregoing reasons, it is respectfully requested that the ALJ decision be vacated and the case be remanded for further proceedings, including a de novo hearing and decision. May 4, 2018 /s/ Howard D. Olinsky__ Howard D. Olinsky, Esq. Attorney for Plaintiff Olinsky Law Group 300 South State Street, Suite 420 Syracuse, New York 13202 T: 315-701-5780 F: 315-701-5781 E: holinsky@windisability.com 19 0 CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I certify that Plaintiff has this day submitted a copy of her Memorandum of Law In Support of a Social Security Appeal to the ECF system, which will notify Defendant's counsel by email and provide access to this submission. /s/ Howard D. Olinsky__ Howard D. Olinsky, Esq. 20

DEFENDANT'S BRIEF filed by Social Security Administration.

1 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS JONESBORO DIVISION BOBBIE JO WILLIAMS,)) Plaintiff)) vs.) Civil Action No. 3:18-cv-00002 JTK) NANCY A. BERRYHILL,) Acting Commissioner) Social Security,)) Defendant) DEFENDANT'S RESPONSE BRIEF Plaintiff brought this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), for review of the final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security (Commissioner) denying her claim for Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) under Title II of the Social Security Act (the Act). See 42 U.S.C. § 423(d). I. ISSUE The main issue before this Court is whether substantial evidence supports the Administrative Law Judge's (ALJ) decision finding Plaintiff not disabled as defined under the Act from April 21, 2015, the alleged onset date, to March 13, 2017, the date of the ALJ's decision. II. STATEMENT OF THE CASE On November 12, 2015, Plaintiff filed her application for DIB, claiming disability due to fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, and osteoarthritis (Tr. 160-161, 196). The agency denied the application initially and on reconsideration. On January 10, 2017, Plaintiff, who was represented by counsel, testified at a hearing before an ALJ (Tr. 26-51). William Elmore, a vocational expert 1 (VE), also testified (Tr. 46-50). Plaintiff was 42 on the alleged disability onset date, and 44 years old at the time of the ALJ's decision (Tr. 20, finding 7). Plaintiff has a high school education and past relevant work as a metal machine tender, and a commercial cleaner (Tr. 20, finding 6, 47, 197). In a decision dated March 13, 2017, the ALJ found Plaintiff was not disabled (Tr. 10-21). The ALJ found that Plaintiff had not engaged in substantial gainful activity (SGA) since her amended onset date (Tr. 12, finding 2). The ALJ further found that Plaintiff had the following severe impairments: lumbar degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, obesity, hypothyroidism, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety disorder (Tr. 12, finding 3). Though severe, the ALJ found that Plaintiff's impairments did not meet or equal one of the impairments listed in Appendix 1, Subpart P, Regulation No. 4 for presumptive disability (Tr. 12-14, finding 4). See 20 C.F.R. Part 404, subpart P, App. 1. In addition, the ALJ determined that Plaintiff had the residual functional capacity (RFC) to perform light 1 work except she could only occasionally balance, stoop, kneel, crouch, and crawl (Tr. 14, finding 5). The ALJ further found Plaintiff could only occasionally climb ramps, stairs, ladders, ropes and scaffolds (Tr. 14, finding 5). In addition, the ALJ found Plaintiff would be limited to work with simple, routine, and repetitive tasks, where the supervisor is simple, direct, and concrete with only occasional changes to the work place setting (Tr. 14, finding 5). The ALJ found Plaintiff could not perform her past work (Tr. 20, finding 6). The ALJ found Plaintiff not disabled at step five because she could perform other light work identified by the VE, such as production assembler, and cashier II (Tr. 20-21, finding 10; 47-49). Plaintiff sought Appeals Council review of the ALJ's unfavorable decision. When the Appeals Council denied 1 Light work involves lifting no more than 20 pounds at a time with frequent lifting or carrying of objects weighing up to 10 pounds. See 20 C.F.R. § 404.1567(b). 3 1 Plaintiff's request for review on November 6, 2017, the ALJ's decision dated March 13, 2017, became the Commissioner's final administrative decision subject to judicial review (Tr. 1-4). III. ARGUMENT A. Judicial Standard of Review Established case law limits judicial review of the Commissioner's final administrative decision to determining whether substantial evidence in the record as a whole supports the decision and whether the adjudicator applied the proper legal standards in evaluating the medical evidence. See Richardson v. Perales, 402 U.S. 389, 401 (1971). Substantial evidence is more than a scintilla, but less than a preponderance, and is such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. Id. at 401. If substantial evidence supports the Commissioner's findings, they are conclusive and must be affirmed. See 42 U.S.C. § 405(g); Richardson, 402 U.S. at 390. Reversal is not warranted merely because substantial evidence would have supported an opposite decision. Shannon v. Chater, 54 F.3d 484, 486 (8th Cir. 1995). B. Burden of Proof It is well settled that the claimant has the burden of proving her disability by establishing a physical or mental impairment lasting at least twelve months that prevents her from engaging in substantial gainful activity. See 42 U.S.C. § 1382c(a)(3)(A); Conley v. Bowen, 781 F.2d 143, 146 (8th Cir. 1986). The Act defines "physical or mental impairment" as "an impairment that results from anatomical, physiological, or psychological abnormalities which are demonstrable by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory diagnostic techniques." 42 U.S.C. § 423(d)(3). In the instant case, the ALJ proceeded to step five of the sequential evaluation process, and found 4 1 Plaintiff not disabled because she could perform other work as a production assembler, and cashier II (Tr. 20-21, finding 10; 47-49). See 20 C.F.R. § 404.1520(g). 2 C. Substantial Evidence Supports the ALJ's RFC Finding After reviewing the evidence as a whole, the ALJ found Plaintiff had the RFC to perform a reduced range of light work (Tr. 14, finding 5). The ALJ has the responsibility for determining a claimant's RFC based on all relevant evidence, including medical records, observations of treating physicians and others, and claimant's own description of her limitations. See Tellez v. Barnhart, 403 F.3d 953, 957 (8th Cir. 2005). Here, the ALJ properly accounted for Plaintiff's severe lumbar degenerative disc disease by limiting her to light work with no more than occasional climbing of ramps, stairs, ladders, ropes or scaffolds and only occasional balancing, stooping, kneeling, crouching, and crawling (Tr. 14). The ALJ accounted for Plaintiff's severe PTSD and anxiety disorder by limiting her to simple, routine, repetitive tasks, where the supervision is simple, direct and concrete, with no more than occasional changes to the work place setting (Tr. 14, finding 5). Substantial evidence supports the ALJ's RFC finding. The ALJ recognized Plaintiff's history of chronic back pain following an on the job injury (Tr. 283). The ALJ noted a September 2014 x-ray of the lumbar spine showed chronic degenerative changes at L4-L5, but no spondylolysis or listhesis (Tr. 15, 288). Robert Alleman, M.D. prescribed Soma and hydrocodone for Plaintiff's lumbar strain (Tr. 286). 2 The Act's regulations require the Commissioner to apply the following five-step sequential evaluation process to each claim for disability benefits: (1) Is the claimant engaging in substantial gainful activity? (2) Does the claimant have a severe impairment? (3) Does the impairment meet or equal an impairment listed in Appendix 1? (4) Does the impairment prevent the claimant from performing past relevant work? (5) Does the impairment prevent the claimant doing any other work? 20 C.F.R. § 404.1520. 5 1 The ALJ noted that in March 2015, Plaintiff sought chiropractic treatment for low back pain, and appeared to be progressing as expected (Tr. 15, 270-271, 272-275). In October 2015, Plaintiff presented to Randi Perry, an advanced practice registered nurse, for medication refills (Tr. 329). Plaintiff complained of multiple joint pain, malaise, and fatigue (Tr. 327). The ALJ noted that at this visit, Plaintiff had a normal musculoskeletal examination, including normal motor strength, normal movement of all extremities, and a normal gait and station (Tr.16, 331). Ms. Perry prescribed diclofenac for Plaintiff's joint pain (Tr. 331). In a February 2016 follow up visit with Ms. Perry, Plaintiff reported muscle aches, muscle weakness, arthralgias, joint pain, and dizziness (Tr. 415). A musculoskeletal examination showed Plaintiff had normal motor strength, and normal movement of all extremities, though she had tenderness (Tr. 416). Ms. Perry diagnosed Plaintiff with multiple joint pain, dizziness and neck pain (Tt. 416). She ordered CT scans of the head and cervical spine, and both were normal (Tr. 416, 419-420). The ALJ concluded that the record did not support Plaintiff's complaints of disabling back pain, noting in particular that Plaintiff's physicians had not recommended surgery and she had not undergone aggressive forms of therapy such as steroid injections (Tr. 17). The ALJ recognized that Plaintiff would have some discomfort, but accounted for Plaintiff's back problems by limiting her to a reduced range of light work (Tr. 17). The Eighth Circuit has noted that the mere fact that working may cause pain or discomfort does not mandate a finding of disability. Jones v. Chater, 86 F.3d 823, 826 (8th Cir. 1996). In addition, the ALJ considered Plaintiff's history of hypothyroidism that she treated with Synthroid (Tr. 312). An October 2014 ultrasound showed Plaintiff had a thyroid nodule (Tr. 281). Plaintiff's primary care provider referred her to an otolaryngologist, Shane Smith, M.D. 6 1 (Tr. 312). In an October 2014 visit, Dr. Smith noted Plaintiff had a thyroid nodule, but Plaintiff denied any pain or difficulty breathing (Tr. 312). Dr. Smith diagnosed Plaintiff with hypothyroidism and multinodular goiter (non-toxic) (Tr. 314). Dr. Smith recommended observation and a repeat thyroid ultrasound in six months. If the nodules enlarged, Dr. Smith would consider a needle biopsy or surgical removal (Tr. 314). On April 29, 2015, Plaintiff had another ultrasound of the thyroid that showed no change compared with the October 2014 ultrasound (Tr. 319). On June 4, 2015, Plaintiff presented to Dr. Smith for a follow up after the thyroid ultrasound (Tr. 321). Dr. Smith noted that Plaintiff was not having any compressive symptoms and he recommended just observing the thyroid for now and rechecking it in one year (Tr. 321, 322-323). The ALJ also noted that Plaintiff had been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and was prescribed Tramadol for it (Tr. 330). The ALJ noted that Plaintiff's physical examinations did not show that she had tender points (Tr. 17). Plaintiff also told Dr. Adams, an examining psychologist, that she took Tramadol and that her medications worked sufficiently (Tr. 409). With respect to Plaintiff's mental impairments, the ALJ considered Plaintiff's February 2016 consultative mental status examination with Catherine Hubbard Adams, Ph.D. (Tr. 16, 408- 412). Plaintiff reported a history of PTSD, and she had a nervous mood (Tr. 408). During the interview, Plaintiff was open and cooperative in providing information (Tr. 410). Plaintiff's speech, thought process, and thought order were normal (Tr. 410). Dr. Adams diagnosed Plaintiff with PTSD, insomnia, and psychotic disorder related to PTSD (Tr. 411). In addition, Dr. Adams found Plaintiff's impairment seemed to interfere with her activities of daily living, including social relationships, grocery shopping and financial management (Tr. 411). Notably, Dr. Adams found Plaintiff had little difficulty attending and sustaining concentration on basic 7 1 tasks (Tr. 411). This evidence supports the ALJ's RFC finding that Plaintiff had the RFC to perform unskilled light jobs identified by the VE (Tr. 21). Plaintiff argues that the ALJ gave great weight to Dr. Adams's opinion, but discounted her opinion that Plaintiff's impairments interfered with her social relationships (Tr. 411). See Plaintiff's Brief at 14. The ALJ discounted Dr. Adams's opinion with respect to her social relationships because it was at odds with Plaintiff's own statements in the record that she socialized with her family, attended her son's basketball games two times a week, and volunteered at the Salvation Army two to three times a week for 12 to 15 hours (Tr. 13, 15, 33- 34, 212-213). The ALJ also considered Plaintiff's statements in her Adult Function Report that she did not have any problems getting along with family, friends, neighbors, or others (Tr. 16, 213). In addition, the ALJ noted Dr. Adams's opinion that Plaintiff's interactions during the interview were mostly socially adequate, and Plaintiff was open and cooperative in providing information during the interview (Tr. 13, 410-411). The ALJ found the record as a whole did not support Dr. Adams's opinion with respect to social functioning (Tr. 13). Therefore, the ALJ properly discounted this portion of Dr. Adams's opinion. See Pirtle v. Astrue, 479 F.3d 931, 934 (8th Cir. 2007) (the ALJ properly relied on the portion of the physician's opinion that was supported by the record, and disregarded the unsupported portion of the opinion). Moreover, the interpretation of a physician's findings is a factual matter left to the ALJ's authority. See Mabry v. Colvin, 815 F.3d 386, 391 (8th Cir. 2016). The ALJ also considered Plaintiff's activities of daily living when assessing her RFC (Tr. 13, 15, 18). For example, the ALJ noted that Plaintiff could handle her personal care, prepare simple meals, do household chores (though her son helped her with them), go grocery shopping, 8 1 pay bills, and attend her son's basketball games up to twice a week (Tr. 13, 18, 37-39, 210-212). In addition, the ALJ noted that beginning in March 2016, Plaintiff volunteered at the Salvation Army two to three days a week for 12 to 15 hours hanging up clothes (Tr. 15, 33-34). Plaintiff's ability to engage in these types of activities suggests she is not as limited as alleged. See Qualls v. Apfel, 158 F.3d 425, 428 (8th Cir. 1998) (maintaining hygiene, cleaning, driving, shopping, and socializing are consistent with a light work RFC and undermine a claimant's complaints of disabling symptoms). Further, at her January 2017 administrative hearing, Plaintiff testified that she had done volunteer work at the Salvation Army since March 2016, which was well after her alleged disability onset date of April 21, 2015 (Tr. 10, 29-30, 34). Acts which are inconsistent with a claimant's assertion of disability reflect negatively upon a claimant's credibility. Heino v. Astrue, 578 F.3d 873, 881 (8th Cir. 2009). Plaintiff claims that there is no opinion from a treating or examining physician as to her physical condition. See Plaintiff's Brief at 9. Although the record does not contain a consultative physical examination, the record contains the following evidence: (1) treatment notes showing Plaintiff had normal motor strength, normal movement of extremities, and a normal gait and station (Tr. 331, 416); (2) Dr. Adams's opinion that Plaintiff had little difficulty in attending and sustaining concentration on basic tasks (Tr. 411); (3) normal MRI scans of the head and cervical spine (Tr. 419-420); and (4) Plaintiff's testimony about her daily activities, including volunteering at the Salvation Army (Tr. 33-34). Here the record contained enough evidence for the ALJ to consider in assessing RFC. Because the medical record was adequately developed, the ALJ was not required to order a consultative examination. See KKC ex rel. Stoner v. Colvin, 818 F.3d 364, 372-73 (8th Cir. 2016). Moreover, there is no requirement than 9 1 an RFC finding be supported by a specific medical opinion. See Hensley v. Colvin, 829 F.3d 926, 932 (8th Cir. 2016) (affirming RFC without medical opinion evidence). D. Substantial Evidence Supports the ALJ's Step Three Finding Plaintiff argues that the ALJ did not consider whether she met Listing 12.06 under the rules applicable at the time of the ALJ's decision. See Plaintiff's Brief at 17. The ALJ discussed the criteria for Listing 12.06 that were in effect at the time of the ALJ's March 13, 2017 decision (Tr. 13). Specifically, the ALJ mentioned the paragraph B criteria that require the claimant to establish one extreme or two marked limitations in (1) understanding, remembering, or applying information; (2) interacting with others; (3) concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace; or (4) adapting or managing oneself (Tr. 13). See 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P, app. 1, §12.06. Plaintiff contends that the ALJ should have applied an earlier version of Listing 12.06 that required the claimant to establish two marked limitations in activities of daily living, difficulties in social functioning, difficulties in maintaining concentration, persistence or pace, or repeated episodes of decompensation. See Plaintiff's Brief at 17. Plaintiff has not identified any error here because she cannot show that she met the criteria for Listing 12.06 under either version. Although Plaintiff claims that she "arguably has marked limitations in her ability to maintain social functioning" (See Plaintiff's Brief at 18), the record does not support her claim. For instance, the ALJ noted Plaintiff's statement that she had no problems getting along with family, friends, or neighbors (Tr. 13, 213). The ALJ also considered Dr. Adams's opinion that Plaintiff's interactions during the interview were mostly socially adequate, and that Plaintiff was open and cooperative in providing information during the interview (Tr. 13, 410-411). Plaintiff also testified that she went to her son's basketball games twice a week, and volunteered 12 to 15 hours per week at the Salvation Army (Tr. 33-34, 10 1 212). Plaintiff has failed to establish that she had a marked limitation in maintaining social functioning. Plaintiff also has failed to establish that she had a marked limitation in her ability to maintain concentration, persistence or pace. The ALJ noted Dr. Adams's opinion that Plaintiff seemed to have little difficulty attending and sustaining concentration on basic tasks (Tr. 13, 411). Plaintiff also testified that she volunteered at the Salvation Army two to three days per week for 12 to 15 hours (Tr. 33-34). Dr. Adams also noted that during her examination, Plaintiff was alert and fully oriented in all spheres (Tr. 410). Plaintiff has failed to establish that she had a marked limitation in maintaining concentration, persistence or pace. In sum, Plaintiff has not shown that she satisfied the criteria for Listing 12.06. See Jones v. Astrue, 619 F.3d 963, 969 (8th Cir. 2010) (for a claimant to show that his impairment matches a listing, it must meet all of the specified criteria). The purpose of the Listings is to "streamline[] the decision process by identifying those claimants whose medical impairments are so severe that it is likely they would be found disabled regardless of their vocational background." Bowen v. Yuckert, 482 U.S. 137, 153 (1987). That is clearly not the case here. At step three, the burden rests squarely on the claimant to prove she meets a Listing. See King v. Astrue, 564 F.3d 978, 979, n.2 (8th Cir. 2009) (burden of proving disability rests with claimant through step four of sequential evaluation process). Plaintiff failed to meet her burden of proof. IV. CONCLUSION Substantial evidence of record supports the Commissioner's decision that Plaintiff was not disabled because she could perform other light work. Therefore, the Commissioner requests that this Court affirm the administrative decision. 11 1 Respectfully submitted, CODY HILAND United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas STACEY E. McCORD Assistant U.S. Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas TRACI B. DAVIS Acting Regional Chief Counsel Social Security Administration /s/ UNA McGEEHAN_____________ UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney Eastern District of Arkansas SSA-Office of the General Counsel 1301 Young Street, Suite A702 Dallas, Texas 75202-5433 Telephone: (214) 767-4110 Facsimile: (214) 767-9189 Texas Bar #00789483 una.mcgeehan@ssa.gov CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I hereby certify that on June 6, 2018, I electronically transmitted the attached document using the Court's ECF System for filing and transmittal of a Notice of Electronic Filing to Plaintiff's attorney, Howard D. Olinsky, an ECF registrant. /s/ UNA McGEEHAN UNA McGEEHAN Special Assistant United States Attorney 12

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Description
1
01/08/2018
MOTION for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis by Bobbie Jo Williams.
01/08/2018
Summons Issued as to Social Security Administration, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General. Forwarded to Plaintiff's counsel for service. (Text entry; no document attached.)
2
01/08/2018
COMPLAINT against Social Security Administration, filed by Bobbie Jo Williams.
1
Exhibit A
2
Civil Cover Sheet)(jak
2 Attachments
3
01/08/2018
(This is a TEXT ENTRY ONLY. There is no pdf document associated with this entry.) ORDER granting 1 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis. Plaintiff may proceed without prepayment of fees and cost or security therefore. Signed by Magistrate Judge Jerome T. Kearney on 01/08/2018.
01/08/2018
Summons Issued as to Social Security Administration, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General. Forwarded to Plaintiff's counsel for service. (Text entry; no document attached.)
4
01/23/2018
SUMMONS Returned Executed by Bobbie Jo Williams. Social Security Administration served on 1/18/2018.
5
01/22/2018
CONSENT to Jurisdiction by U.S. Magistrate Judge. Case reassigned to Magistrate Judge Jerome T. Kearney. Signed by Judge James M. Moody Jr. on 1/22/2018.
6
03/21/2018
NOTICE of Appearance by Una McGeehan on behalf of Social Security Administration
7
03/21/2018
ANSWER to 2 Complaint by Social Security Administration.
8
03/21/2018
NOTICE by Social Security Administration
9
03/22/2018
(This is a TEXT ENTRY ONLY. There is no.pdf document associated with this entry) ADMINISTRATIVE TRANSCRIPT of proceedings re 7 Answer to Complaint and 8 Notice (Other). Document received in paper and maintained in the Clerk's office. (Documents w/restricted access added on 3/22/2018 for review by Court users only)
10
03/23/2018
SCHEDULING ORDER: Plaintiff's Brief due by 5/4/2018. Defendant's Brief due within 42 days of the date Plaintiff's Brief is served. Signed at the Direction of the Court on 03/23/2018.
11
05/04/2018
PLAINTIFF'S BRIEF filed by Bobbie Jo Williams. Defendant Brief due by 6/15/2018
12
06/06/2018
DEFENDANT'S BRIEF filed by Social Security Administration.
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