United States District Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville Division
H. SHARP, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court is Plaintiff's Motion for Judgment on
the Administrative Record (Docket No. 17). For the reasons
stated herein, Plaintiff's Motion is DENIED.
a civil action for judicial review of the Social Security
Administration's denial of benefits to the Juvenile
Claimant (“Claimant”), represented in this action
by his grandmother, Lori Mitchell. On February 24, 2011,
Plaintiff filed an application for supplemental security
income on behalf of Claimant alleging that the onset date for
Claimant's disability was January 1, 2007. The Social
Security Administration (“SSA”) denied the
application, and Plaintiff filed a written request for a
hearing. An Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) held
a hearing on November 5, 2012, at which Claimant and his
grandmother testified. In a report dated December 14, 2012,
the ALJ found that Claimant was not disabled under the Social
Security Act. Administrative Record (“AR”), found
at Docket No. 15 p. 26.
hearing, Claimant testified that he was in fifth grade and
that he was doing “good” in school. AR, p. 35. He
stated that he liked his teachers “kind of” and
that he was making good grades. Id. Claimant
testified that he was “kind of” able to read and
that he read stories by himself. Id. He testified
that he lived with his grandmother and with his mom and dad.
AR, p. 36.
Mitchell, Claimant's grandmother, testified that she has
raised or is raising all nine children of Claimant's
mother. AR, p. 38. She stated that Claimant had tried to set
their house on fire twice; would cut other kids' papers
and their clothes; had to be monitored going to the bathroom;
was “wetting” on people; and told her that
sometimes a “voice” comes to him. AR, p.37. She
stated that Claimant was on about four or five different
medicines and in special education at school. Id.
Mitchell testified that Claimant is always talking about
killing himself or hurting one of his siblings when he gets
mad. AR, p. 39. Ms. Mitchell stated that Claimant does not
really care for playing with kids; he likes to be by himself.
Id. Claimant rides the Special Education bus to and
from school because of his misbehavior on the regular bus.
Id. She testified that she has to walk Claimant to
and from the bus stop because, if she does not, he will run
around and get lost. AR, p. 40.
Mitchell also testified that she had received calls from
Claimant's school about his misbehavior and that Claimant
has struggled with his work and receives extra help at school
through an Individualized Education Plan (“IEP”).
AR, pp. 40-41. She stated that when he has his medicine,
Claimant is calm; but if he does not get his medicine, the
teachers see a difference in the way he acts at school. AR,
p. 41. She testified that they were going to change
Claimant's medications again soon because they were not
working. AR, pp. 41-42.
uses a three-step process to determine if a child applicant
is disabled and entitled to benefits: (1) if the child is
engaged in substantial gainful activity, the child is not
disabled; (2) if the child does not have a severe medically
determinable impairment or combination of impairments, the
child is not disabled; and (3) if the child's
impairment(s) do not meet, medically equal, or functionally
equal the listings, the child is not disabled. 20 C.F.R.
third step, an impairment functionally equals a listing if it
results in “marked” limitations in two domains of
functioning or an “extreme” limitation in one
domain. 20 C.F.R. § 416.926a(a). The regulations
identify six domains of functioning to be considered: (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 yourself; and
(6) health and physical well-being. 20 C.F.R. §
claimant has a “marked” limitation if the
claimant's impairments seriously interfere with the
claimant's ability to independently initiate, sustain, or
complete activities. 20 C.F.R. § 416.926(e)(2)(i). A
“marked” limitation is more severe than
“moderate” and less severe than
“extreme.” 20 C.F.R. § 416.926(e)(2)(i). An
impairment causes an “extreme” limitation when it
interferes very seriously with the claimant's ability to
independently initiate, sustain, or complete activities. 20
C.F.R. § 416.926(e)(3)(i). In determining the effect of
an impairment on the six domains, the Commissioner considers
information from medical sources, parents and teachers, and
consultative examiners. 20 C.F.R. § 416.926a(b)(3).
in this case made the following findings:
1. The claimant was born on August 7, 2002. Therefore, he was
a school-aged child on February 24, 1011, the date his
application was protectively filed, and is currently a
2. The claimant has not engaged in substantial gainful
activity since February 24, 2011.
3. The claimant has the following severe impairment:
attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
4. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of
impairments that meets or medically equals the severity of
one of the listed impairments.
5. The claimant does not have an impairment or combination of
impairments that functionally equals the severity of the
6. The claimant has not been disabled, as defined in the
Social Security Act, since February 24, 2011, the date the