United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER ADOPTING THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
MARIANNE O. BATTANI UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Plaintiff Kimberly Quisenberry's objections
(Doc. 29) to the Magistrate Judge's Report and
Recommendation (“R&R”) (Doc. 27). Quisenberry
filed an action seeking judicial review of a final decision
of the Defendant Commissioner of the Social Security
Administration (“Commissioner”) under 42 U.S.C.
§ 405(g). Each side filed a motion for summary judgment
(Doc. 20; Doc. 25).
matter was referred to Magistrate Judge Anthony Patti, who
found that substantial evidence supported the Administrative
Law Judge's (“ALJ”) and the
Commissioner's decision to deny benefits. (Doc. 27). For
the reasons stated below, the Court ADOPTS
the Magistrate Judge's R&R; GRANTS
Defendant's motion for summary judgment and
DENIES Plaintiff's motion for summary
filed the present action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g),
challenging the final decision of the Commissioner, who,
after an initial hearing and two subsequent hearings upon
remand, denied her applications for Disability Insurance
Benefits (“DIB”) and Supplemental Security Income
(“SSI”) under the Social Security Act.
Quisenberry asserts that the Commissioner's decision is
not based upon substantial evidence. (Doc. 20).
matter was referred to Magistrate Judge Patti for
determination of all non-dispositive motions pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A) and issuance of a Report and
Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and
(C). Each side filed a motion for summary judgment (Doc. 20;
Doc. 25). Magistrate Judge Patti found that the Commissioner
applied the correct legal standards and made findings of fact
that were supported by substantial evidence in the record,
and recommended that the Commissioner's motion for
summary judgment be granted, that Quisenberry's motion
for summary judgment be denied, and that the ALJ's
decision be affirmed. (Doc. 27).
Standard of Review
district court must conduct a de novo review of the
parts of a Magistrate Judge's R&R to which a party
objects. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). The district court
“may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part,
the findings or recommendations made by the
magistrate.” Id. The requirement of de
novo review “is a statutory recognition that
Article III of the United States Constitution mandates that
the judicial power of the United States be vested in judges
with life tenure.” United States v. Shami, 754
F.2d 670, 672 (6th Cir.1985). Accordingly, Congress enacted
28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) to “insure[ ] that the
district judge would be the final arbiter” of a matter
referred to a magistrate judge. Flournoy v.
Marshall, 842 F.2d 875, 878 (6th Cir.1987).
Court must affirm the Commissioner's conclusions so long
as the Commissioner applied the correct legal standards and
made findings of fact that are supported by substantial
evidence in the record. Walters v. Comm'r of Soc.
Sec., 127 F.3d 525, 528 (6th Cir. 1997). Substantial
evidence is evidence that a reasonable mind might accept as
adequate evidence in support a conclusion. Id. This
means that administrative findings
are not subject to reversal merely because substantial
evidence exists in the record to support a different
conclusion. The substantial evidence standard presupposes
that there is a ‘zone of choice' within which the
[Commissioner] may proceed without interference from the
courts. If the [administrative] decision is supported by
substantial evidence, a reviewing court must affirm.
Felisky v. Bowen, 35 F.3d 1027, 1035 (6th Cir. 1994)
(citations omitted). The Sixth Circuit has further explained,
“[i]f supported by substantial evidence, the
Commissioner's decision must be affirmed, even if the
reviewing court would decide the case differently and even if
the claimant's position is also supported by substantial
evidence. Linscomb v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 25
Fed.Appx. 264, 266 (6th Cir. 2001) (citations
raises three objections to the R&R. First, Quisenberry
contends that the Magistrate Judge erred in agreeing with the
ALJ's weighing the opinions of the various medical
professionals who examined Plaintiff. Second, Quisenberry
asserts that the Magistrate Judge erred in finding that the
ALJ's RFC assessment was supported by substantial
evidence. Finally, Quisenberry submits that the Magistrate
Judge erred by determining that the ALJ's hypothetical to
the Vocational Expert was supported by substantial evidence.