United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
MALACHY E. MANNION, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
before the court is the report of Magistrate Judge Martin C.
Carlson which recommends that the plaintiff's appeal of
the decision of the Commissioner of Social Security be denied
and the Commissioner's final decision denying the
plaintiff's claim for benefits be affirmed. (Doc. 13).
The plaintiff has filed objections to the report. (Doc. 14).
The Commissioner has filed a response to the plaintiff's
objections. (Doc. 15). Upon review of the record in this
matter, the plaintiff's objections will be
OVERRULED, the report and recommendation of
Judge Carlson will be ADOPTED IN ITS
ENTIRETY and the Clerk of Court will be directed to
CLOSE THIS CASE.
objections are timely filed to the report and recommendation
of a magistrate judge, the district court must review de
novo those portions of the report to which objections
are made. 28 U.S.C. §636(b)(1); Brown v.
Astrue, 649 F.3d 193, 195 (3d Cir. 2011). Although the
standard is de novo, the extent of review is
committed to the sound discretion of the district judge, and
the court may rely on the recommendations of the magistrate
judge to the extent it deems proper. Rieder v.
Apfel, 115 F.Supp.2d 496, 499 (M.D.Pa. 2000) (citing
United States v. Raddatz, 447 U.S. 667, 676 (1980)).
those sections of the report and recommendation to which no
objection is made, the court should, as a matter of good
practice, “satisfy itself that there is no clear error
on the face of the record in order to accept the
recommendation.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b), advisory committee
notes; see also Univac Dental Co. v. Dentsply Intern.,
Inc., 702 F.Supp.2d 465, 469 (M.D.Pa. 2010) (citing
Henderson v. Carlson, 812 F.2d 874, 878 (3d Cir.
1987) (explaining judges should give some review to every
report and recommendation)). Nevertheless, whether timely
objections are made or not, the district court may accept,
not accept, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or
recommendations made by the magistrate judge. 28 U.S.C.
§636(b)(1); Local Rule 72.31.
plaintiff filed an application for disability benefits
pursuant to Title II of the Social Security Act
(“Act”) claiming disability based upon a heart
attack and back injuries. The plaintiff's claim was
denied upon initial administrative review and, as a result,
the plaintiff requested a hearing before an administrative
law judge (“ALJ”). A hearing was conducted at
which the plaintiff was represented by counsel.
evidence of record, among other things, included the opinions
of the plaintiff's two treating physicians indicating
that he was capable of returning to work (and had, in fact,
reported working after his alleged onset date) and the
opinions of two consulting source opinions indicating that he
was completely disabled and unable to return to work. In
considering these opinions, as well as the other evidence of
record, the ALJ found that the plaintiff had not been
disabled within the meaning of the Act and concluded that the
plaintiff could perform a limited range of light work
activity. The plaintiff's application for benefits was
therefore denied. The plaintiff appealed the ALJ's
decision to the Appeals Council which denied his request for
review making the ALJ's decision the final decision of
plaintiff filed the instant action on April 11, 2018, arguing
that substantial evidence does not support the ALJ's
residual functional capacity (“RFC”) assessment
and that there are multiple errors with regard to the
ALJ's symptom assessment. In considering the
plaintiff's claims, Judge Carlson determined that the
decision of the ALJ is supported by substantial evidence. As
such, Judge Carlson recommended that the plaintiff's
appeal be denied and the Commissioner's decision be
plaintiff filed objections to Judge Carlson's report to
which the Commissioner has responded. Upon review, the
plaintiff argues again, as he did in his initial and reply
briefs, that the ALJ's decision is not supported by
substantial evidence as she erred in her RFC assessment and
in her symptom evaluation. The plaintiff argues that Judge
Carlson erred in his report finding otherwise. The court has
reviewed Judge Carlson's report and the record in this
case and finds that Judge Carlson's report thoroughly
explains why the ALJ's decision is, in fact, supported by
substantial evidence.In his report, Judge Carlson discusses,
among other things, the laws and regulations applicable to
the ALJ's determinations relating to a claimant's RFC
assessment, as well as to medical and lay testimony and
subjective complaints. He further discusses the deferential
standard which limits this court's review of an ALJ's
determinations on such matters and why, on the facts of this
case, the ALJ's decision was supported by substantial
evidence under that standard of review. Because the court
agrees with the sound reasoning that led Judge Carlson to his
conclusions, the court will overrule the plaintiff's
objections and adopt Judge Carlson's report in its
entirety as the reasoning of the court.
THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:
The plaintiff's objections (Doc. 14) are
The report and recommendation of Judge Carlson (Doc.
13), is ADOPTED IN ITS ENTIRETY AS THE
RULING OF THE COURT.
The plaintiff's appeal is DENIED and the
decision of the Commissioner is AFFIRMED.
The Clerk of Court is directed to CL ...