I recently wrote about the effect that increased work loads had on an Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”). One wonders what an ALJ thinks when having to adjudicate a Social Security Disability (“SSD”) claim that the State agency denied.
I represent a 39 year old sanitation worker with a severe hip problem that requires him to use a cane permanently, and prevents him from prolonged sitting. The State agency said the claimant was credible, did not need a consultative examination, but did not have a medical opinion about his restrictions and limitations.
Contrary to the State agency’s explanation for denying the claimant’s SSD application, the claimant submitted a report from his surgeon and treating orthopedist that did in fact provide restrictions and limitations. In light of that transparent error, there was no medical issue for ALJ Faraguna to evaluate, and the hearing was short as the ALJ simply focused on the testimony of a vocational expert, which readily found the claimant disabled.