Development of record by ALJ was sufficient says court
Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Development of record by ALJ was sufficient says court

By Payroll and Entitlements Editorial Staff

An ALJ’s residual functional capacity (RFC) assessment must give consideration to all of a claimant’s impairments and be based on competent medical evidence establishing the type of activity that a claimant can perform in a work setting. Here, the ALJ determined that the claimant had the RFC to work at a light exertional level on simple and repetitive tasks. The claimant appealed, arguing that the ALJ failed to adequately address her mental limitations, including her ability to concentrate, and all of her physical impairments and treatments. Initially, the court noted that the ALJ’s opinion was somewhat cursory. However, it concluded that the ALJ’s findings did not ignore her deficits in concentration, persistence, or pace of work. The hypothetical questions posed to the vocational expert (VE) sufficiently captured the light work that the reviewing consultants believed the claimant could undertake and were consistent with the psychological consultant’s assessment. There was no omission during the hearing nor did the claimant provide new medical evidence that had not been considered. The ALJ asked appropriate questions and the VE’s responses supported a denial of benefits. The decision of the district court was affirmed (Lora S. Simons v. Saul, CA-7 (Unpub. Op.), No. 19-2332, June 12, 2020).

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