United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Western Division
Tammy A. Pingle, Plaintiff
Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
JEFFREY J. HELMICK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
me is the Report and Recommendation (“R & R”)
of Magistrate Judge Jonathan D. Greenberg. (Doc. No. 16).
Judge Greenberg recommends I affirm the final decision of
Defendant Commissioner of Social Security denying Plaintiff
Tammy A. Pingle's applications for Period of Disability
and Disability Insurance Benefits. (Id.). Pingle
filed objections to the R & R, (Doc. No. 17), and the
Commissioner filed a response, (Doc. No. 18).
reviewing the R & R, I hereby incorporate and adopt, in
full, the “Procedural History” and
“Evidence” sections set forth in the R & R,
as there were no objections to these sections by Pingle.
(Doc. No. 16 at 1-18).
district court must conduct a de novo review of
“any part of the magistrate judge's disposition
that has been properly objected to. The district judge may
accept, reject or modify the recommended disposition, receive
further evidence, or return the matter to the magistrate
judge with instructions.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3).
general objection that does not “address specific
concerns with the magistrate's report” will not
suffice. Howard v. Sec'y of Health & Human
Servs., 932 F.2d 505, 509 (6th Cir. 1991); see
also Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b)(2) (“[A] party may
serve and file specific written objections to the
proposed findings and recommendations.”) (emphasis
added). Allowing such general objections would frustrate the
purpose of Magistrate Judges Act and “be an inefficient
use of judicial resources.” Howard, 932 F.3d
reviewing those non-general objections, the district judge
“must affirm the Commissioner's conclusions absent
a determination that the Commissioner has failed to apply the
correct legal standards or has made findings of fact
unsupported by substantial evidence in the record.”
Walters v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 127 F.3d 525,
528 (6th Cir. 1997); see also 42 U.S.C. §
405(g). “Substantial evidence is defined as ‘such
relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as
adequate to support a conclusion.'” Colvin v.
Barnhart, 475 F.3d 727, 730 (6th Cir. 2007) (quoting
Heston v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 245 F.3d 528, 534
(6th Cir. 2001)). If the Commissioner's findings of fact
are supported by substantial evidence, those findings are
conclusive. McClanahan v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec.,
474 F.3d 830, 833 (6th Cir. 2006).
case, Pingle cites no error by Judge Greenberg in her second
objection. (Doc. No. 17 at 4-5). Since this is not an appeal
of the R & R for my review, the general objection must be
the second objection, Pingle asserts Judge Greenberg
“mischaracterized” the issue in upholding the
ALJ's decision to give the state agency physicians'
opinions “great weight.” (Id. at 2).
Pingle asserts her objection was not to the weight given to
the opinion but instead the ALJ's failure to properly
explain the deviations from these opinions given “great
weight.” (Id.). Judge Greenberg addressed this
argument in his R & R, stating that the ALJ was not
required to “‘explain why he did not adopt all of
[the] limitations.'” (Doc. No. 16 at 48 (quoting
Hedick v. Berryhill, 2018 WL 6348759, *6 (N.D. Ohio
Nov.14, 2018), report and recommendation adopted by
2018 WL 6344611 (N.D. Ohio Dec. 4, 2018))). I agree with this
statement generally. But because of Pingle's regrettably
inartful argument in the merits brief, (Doc. No. 11 at
18-19), I find this statement alone does not address
Pingle's overarching challenge to the ALJ's decision.
Essentially, Pingle disputes not the ALJ's decision not
to adopt the state physicians' opinions wholesale, but
the ALJ's failure to properly consider all medical
evidence in rendering the Residual Functioning Capacity
stated by Judge Greenberg in the R & R,
“In rendering his RFC decision, the ALJ must give some
indication of the evidence upon which he is relying, and he
may not ignore evidence that does not support his decision,
especially when that evidence, if accepted, would change his
analysis.” Fleischer v. Astrue, 774 F.Supp.2d
875, 880 (N.D. Ohio 2011) (citing Bryan v. Comm'r of
Soc. Sec., 383 Fed.Appx. 140, 148 (3d Cir. 2010)
(“The ALJ has an obligation to ‘consider all
evidence before him' when he ‘mak[es] a residual
functional capacity determination,' and must also
‘mention or refute [...] contradictory, objective
medical evidence” presented to him.”)). See
also SSR 96-8p, at *7, 1996 SSR LEXIS 5, *20 (“The
RFC assessment must ...