United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Western Division, Dayton
M. Rose District Judge
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS 
L. Ovington United States Magistrate Judge
Ronda Hoblit brings this case challenging the Social Security
Administration's denial of her application for
Supplemental Security Income. She applied for benefits on
March 1, 2011, asserting that she could no longer work a
substantial paid job. In early 2012, Administrative Law Judge
(ALJ) Amelia G. Lombardo concluded that Plaintiff was not
eligible for benefits because she was not under a
“disability” as defined in the Social Security
its review, the Social Security Administration's Appeals
Council remanded ALJ Lombardo's decision. In August 2013,
ALJ Lombardo issued a second decision, again concluding that
Plaintiff was not under a disability. This time around the
Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review.
Consequently, Plaintiff sought review in this Court. See
Hoblit v. Commissioner of Social Security, 3:14-cv-461,
(S.D. Ohio October 21, 2015) (Rice, D.J.). Upon the
parties' joint stipulation, this Court remanded the case
pursuant to sentence four of 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) for
further administrative proceedings. Id.
in January 2015, Plaintiff filed a new application for
Supplemental Security Income. The Social Security
Administration granted her new application, finding her
eligible for benefits. (Doc. #7, PageID #s 2140,
2313-30). By then she had turned age 50 and met the all the
eligibility requirements, including, in part, her status as a
“person closely approaching advanced age.”
See 20 C.F.R. § 416.963(d).
leaves Plaintiff's March 1, 2011 application-the one this
Court remanded- in the midst of its administrative
proceedings pending before the Appeals Council. The Appeals
Counsel identified many flaws in ALJ Lombardo's August
2013 decision and consequently remanded the matter for
further proceedings before an ALJ. The case was thereafter
assigned to ALJ Benjamin Chaykin who held a hearing and later
issued a decision finding that Plaintiff was not under a
disability before her established disability onset date of
October 18, 2014. (Doc. #7, PageID #1973). Plaintiff
brings the present case challenging ALJ Chaykin's
decision that she was not under a disability starting on the
date of her application continuing through the date ALJ
Chaykin found her disabled. Consequently, the non-disability
period remaining at issue is March 1, 2011 until October 17,
2014 (after which she was under a disability and entitled to
benefits, as the Administration found).
presently contends that the ALJ erred by rejecting every
treating medical-source opinion, by impermissibly acting as a
medical expert, and by misinterpreting the medical record and
the nature of fibromyalgia. She asserts, moreover, that she
was essentially per se disabled during the time period in
question based on her hospitalizations and treatment alone.
Commissioner maintains that the ALJ complied with the Appeals
Council's remand order and properly evaluated
Plaintiff's fibromyalgia and the medical opinions of
asserts that she has been under a “disability”
since January 14, 2011. She was forty-six years old at that
time, and was therefore considered a “younger
person” under Social Security Regulations during the
time period presently at issue. See 20 C.F.R. §
416.963(c). She has a limited education. See 20
C.F.R. § 416.964(b)(3). She worked many years ago as a
nurse assistant and automobile salesperson but has no past
relevant work experience. See Doc. #7,
testified at the hearing before ALJ Chaykin that she is not
able to return to work because she cannot sit or stand for
long periods of time. Id. at 2052, 2061. She
explained, “I'm lucky if I can stand for two
minutes.” Id. at 2052. She also indicated that
she can stand comfortably for about five minutes.
Id. at 2060. When she does stand, it bothers her
knees. Id. Sitting comfortably lasts two minutes for
her. Id. at 2059. She has a lot of pain in her hips
and legs. Id. In testimony the ALJ later declined to
credit, Plaintiff stated that she had used a wheelchair for
about five years. Id. at 2053; see PageID
testified that she does not walk very often because when she
does, she falls. Id. at 2059. She uses a walker
inside her house because it is hard to get around in the
wheelchair. Id. at 2053. In addition,
Plaintiff's right shoulder hurts all the time.
Id. at 1054. She had surgery to repair a broken
clavicle bone, but it did not improve her pain. Id.
has pain from fibromyalgia every day. Id. at 2062.
“[I]t flares every day. I never have relief from it.
And it's something that's going to live with me the
rest of my life.” Id. at 2063. For treatment
of her fibromyalgia, Plaintiff sees Dr. Linn three times a
month. Id. at 2062-63. Plaintiff testified that she
takes a lot of pain medication but “it doesn't do
anything.” Id. at 2061. She does not have any
side effects. Id.
also struggles with mental-health issues. Id. at
2056. In January 2011, she was hospitalized after attempting
suicide by taking a lot of pills. Id. In August
2012, she got mad at her children and husband: “I just
flared off and I took some of my medicine, Vicodin, and I
just tried to kill myself. I didn't want to be around no
more.” Id. at 2057. Plaintiff presented to
Good Samaritan Hospital in June 2014, after she punched a
wall and injured her hand. Id. at 2058.
2011, 2012, and 2013, Plaintiff had violent
outbursts-“at least five times a day.”
Id. at 2058. During these outbursts, she threw
things and “would go after a person and then stop
because … if [she] did it[, ] they were going to turn
[her] into the police and [she] didn't want to go to
jail….” Id. at 2059. The people she
went after were her daughters. Id.
received mental-health treatment with Dr. Gentile in the CAM
program.Id. at 2056. However, Dr. Gentile
left and at the time of the hearing, she saw Dr. Budding.
Id. at 2056, 2063. She saw Dr. Budding twice a month
and attended counseling at CAM three times a month.
Id. at 2064. Plaintiff takes medication for her
mental-health symptoms, but it does not help and she still
has flare ups. Id. at 2065
addition, Plaintiff said that she is unable to work because
she does not “comprehend things. If they were to give
[her] a thing to do and [said] a lot of tasks that [she]
would have to do, [she] can't remember them.”
Id. at 2061.
lives with her parents and her daughter. Id. at
2050. She has another daughter who lives with her husband.
Id. Plaintiff's parents are in good health and
take care of her. Id. at 2052. Plaintiff does not
have a driver's license and has not one for at least ten
years. Id. at 2051. She went to tenth grade in
school and has not obtained a GED. Id. at 2052. She
has not worked in ten to twelve years. Id.