United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
PHIL GILBERT UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
accordance with 42 U.S.C. § 405(g), plaintiff Jermelia
Randolph, on behalf of A.R.P., her minor son, seeks review of
the final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security
denying A.R.P.'s application for Supplemental Security
Income (SSI) Benefits.
Randolph filed an application for SSI on behalf of her minor
son in July 2012, alleging disability beginning on October
18, 2010. (Tr. 38). After holding a hearing, ALJ Paul R.
Armstrong denied the application for benefits in a decision
dated October 17, 2013. (Tr. 38-53). The Appeals Council
denied review, and the ALJ's decision became the final
agency decision subject to judicial review. (Tr. 4).
Plaintiff exhausted her administrative remedies and filed a
timely complaint in this Court.
Raised by Plaintiff
counsel, plaintiff raises the following arguments:
ALJ's evaluation of functional equivalence was the
product of legal error and unsupported by substantial
evidence because the ALJ:
(1) mischaracterized educational records;
(2) ignored some of A.R.P.'s physical impairments;
(3) erroneously weighed some of the opinion evidence; and
(4) failed to assess the weight that should be afforded to
Dr. Deppe's opinion.
under the age of 18 is considered disabled if he or she has a
medically determinable physical or mental impairment
“which results in marked and severe functional
limitations” and which has lasted or is expected to
last for more than 12 months. 42 U.S.C.
§1382c(a)(3)(C)(i). A physical or mental impairment is
“an impairment that results from anatomical,
physiological, or psychological abnormalities which are
demonstrable by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory
diagnostic techniques.” 42 U.S.C. §1382c(a)(3)(D).
determination of childhood disability proceeds by way of a
three-step sequential analysis which is set forth in 20
C.F.R. §416.924. The three- step analysis is as follows:
1. Is the child claimant engaged in substantial gainful
2. Does the child have an impairment or combination of
impairments that is “severe?” 3. Does the
impairment or combination of impairments meet, medically
equal, or functionally equal the severity of a listed
answer of “yes” to the first question, or
“no” to the second or third questions, means that
the child is not disabled.
two, an impairment is not “severe” if it is a
slight abnormality or a combination of slight abnormalities
that cause no more than minimal functional limitations. 20
three, in order to determine whether the child's
impairments functionally equal a listing, the agency
considers how the child functions in six domains:
(1) acquiring and using information;
(2) attending and completing tasks;
(3) interacting and relating with others;
(4) moving about and manipulating objects;
(5) caring for himself; and
(6) health and physical ...