United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania
G. SMITH, J.
NOW, this 13th day of December, 2017, after
considering the complaint filed by the plaintiff, Denise
Zuppo-Weber (“Zuppo”) (Doc. No. 3), the answer to
the complaint filed by the defendant, Nancy Ann Berryhill,
Acting Commissioner of Social Security (Doc. No. 10), the
administrative record (Doc. No. 9), Zuppo's brief and
statement of issues in support of her request for review
(Doc. No. 15), the defendant's response to the request
for review (Doc. No. 16), Zuppo's reply brief (Doc. No.
17), and the report and recommendation filed by United States
Magistrate Judge Richard A. Lloret on October 30, 2017 (Doc.
No. 20); and Zuppo's objections to the report and
recommendation (Doc. No. 21); accordingly, it is hereby
ORDERED as follows:
clerk of court is DIRECTED to remove this
case from civil suspense and return it to the court's
Zuppo's objections to the report and recommendation (Doc.
No. 21) are OVERRULED;
report and recommendation (Doc. No. 20) is
APPROVED and ADOPTED;
Zuppo's request for review is DENIED;
final decision of the Commissioner is
clerk of court is DIRECTED to mark this
matter as CLOSED.
 The court conducts a de novo review
and determination of the portions of the report and
recommendation by the magistrate judge to which there are
objections. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) (“A judge of
the court shall make a de novo determination of those
portions of the report or specified proposed findings or
recommendations to which objection is made.”); see also
E.D. Pa. Loc. R. Civ. P. 72.1(IV)(b) (providing requirements
for filing objections to magistrate judge's proposed
findings, recommendations or report).
Zuppo raises three objections to Judge Lloret's
report and recommendation. See Plaintiff's Objs. to the
R. & R. of the Magistrate (“Objs.”), Doc. No.
21. The court will consider each objection in turn.
For her first objection, Zuppo contends that
substantial evidence does not support the ALJ's step
three evaluation. See Id. at 1-3. Zuppo does not
raise any arguments here that have not already been
appropriately addressed by Judge Lloret's report and
recommendation, and the court adopts Judge Lloret's
analysis of this issue.
For her second objection, Zuppo contends that
substantial evidence does not support the ALJ's treatment
of the opinion evidence. See Id. at 3-4. In his
decision, the ALJ gave minimal weight to the residual
functional capacity questionnaires submitted by Dr. Campa and
Dr. Loeffert (both of whom Zuppo contends were treating
physicians). See R. & R. at 11-13. Judge Lloret explained
that substantial evidence supported the ALJ's decision to
give these opinions minimal weight. See Id. Zuppo,
however, takes issue with Judge Lloret's explanation.
Specifically, she claims that Judge Lloret asserted
“that the questionnaires completed by Drs. Campa and
Loeffert do not elaborate of [sic] their treating
relationship with Zuppo . . . .” Objs. at 3. According
to Zuppo, “if the ALJ had ...