United States District Court, D. Arizona
A. Bowman United States Magistrate Judge.
plaintiff filed this action for review of the final decision
of the Commissioner for Social Security pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 405(g). (Doc. 1, p. 1)
Magistrate Judge presides over this case pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 636(c) having received the written consent of
both parties. See Fed.R.Civ.P. 73; (Doc. 14)
court finds that the ALJ failed to “fully and fairly
develop the record.” Tonapetyan v. Halter, 242
F.3d 1144, 1150 (9th Cir. 2001). The case is
remanded for further proceedings.
January of 2014, Pope filed applications for disability
insurance benefits and for supplemental security income
pursuant to Title II and Title XVI of the Social Security Act
respectively. (Tr. 180, 186) She alleged disability beginning
on August 1, 2012, due to “fibromyalgia, diabetes,
obesity, bad back and hips.” (Tr. 180, 186, 202)
applications were denied initially and upon reconsideration.
(Tr. 113-120); (Tr. 123-129) Pope requested review and
appeared with counsel at a hearing before Administrative Law
Judge (ALJ) Laura Speck Havens on June 8, 2016. (Tr. 43) In
her decision, dated October 6, 2016, the ALJ found Pope was
not disabled because there are jobs in the national economy
that she can perform considering her age, education, work
experience, and residual functional capacity. (Tr. 26-35)
appealed and submitted additional records from her treating
physician, “Sagir Bera, M.D.” (Tr. 2) On June 3,
2014, the Appeals Council rejected the additional evidence
and denied review making the decision of the ALJ the final
decision of the Commissioner. (Tr. 1-6) Pope subsequently
filed this action appealing that final decision. (Doc. 1)
Work History and Medical History
was born in September of 1968. (Tr. 33) She was 48 years old
when ALJ Havens issued her decision in October of 2016. (Tr.
has a high school diploma. (Tr. 47) She worked as a bartender
until August of 2014 when she was “let go”
because she could no longer stand for longer that 15-20
minutes at a stretch. (Tr. 47-49) She did not apply for
unemployment benefits. (Tr. 47-48)
April of 2014, Martha A. Goodrich, M.D., reviewed the medical
records for the disability determination service and offered
an opinion of Pope's physical limitations. (Tr. 68)
Goodrich opined that Pope could lift 10 pounds occasionally
and 10 pounds frequently. (Tr. 71-74); (Tr. 80-83) She could
stand and/or walk for 2 hours in an 8-hour day. Id.
She could sit for more than 6 hours in an 8-hour day.
Id. She should never crawl or climb ladders, ropes,
or scaffolds. Id. She should only occasionally climb
ramps or stairs, stoop, kneel, or crouch. Id. She
should avoid concentrated exposure to environmental hazards
such as fumes, odors, dusts, gases, or poor ventilation.
Id. She should avoid even moderate exposure to
hazards such as machinery or heights. Id.
October of 2014, Marilyn Orenstein, M.D., reviewed the
medical records for the disability determination service and
offered an opinion of Pope's physical limitations. (Tr.
94-96); (Tr. 106-108) Orenstein agreed with the limitations
previously provided by Goodrich. Id.
October of 2014, Pope was examined by Jerome Rothbaum, M.D.,
for the disability determination services. (Tr. 336) Rothbaum
diagnosed morbid obesity, asthma, nicotine abuse, alcohol
abuse, myofascial low back pain, and hypertension. (Tr. 339)
Rothbaum opined that none of these conditions would impose
any limitations for 12 consecutive months. Id.
record contains a Physical Residual Function Capacity
Statement apparently from Pope's treating physician,
Sagir Bera, D.O. (Tr. 322-323) Bera diagnosed Pope with
diabetes, fibromyalgia, chronic pain syndrome,
hyperlipidemia, obstructive sleep apnea, morbid obesity, and
chronic back pain. (Tr. 322) He opined that Pope's pain
is severe enough to constantly interfere with her attention
and concentration. (Tr. 322) Bera estimated that Pope could
sit for more than 3 hours at a time, and for about 6 hours in
an 8-hour day. (Tr. 323) She could stand or walk for 10-15
minutes at one time. (Tr. ...