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Monday, December 02, 2013

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit decides one Indiana case today, a reversal

In CAROL BATES v. CAROLYN W. COLVIN, ACTING COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY (ND Ind., Lee), a 17-page opinion, Judge Kanne writes:

Carol Bates has suffered from radiating neck pain since 2004, when a truck struck her car from behind. In the intervening years, she has continued to care for her six adopted children, and dealt with the loss of her fiancé and mother. These physical and personal stresses have taken their toll, leading Bates to seek psychological and psychiatric treatment.

Because of her mental and physical impairments, Bates sought Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”). After her initial application was denied, Bates requested a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. The ALJ denied her application, and the district court affirmed. Because we find the ALJ improperly discounted the opinion of Bates’s treating psychiatrist and improperly evaluated Bates’s testimony concerning her mental health, we reverse the decision of the district court and remand for rehearing. * * *

Because the ALJ improperly discredited Bates’s testimony considering the limitations caused by her mental illness and failed to grant Dr. Shahzaad’s medical opinion the weight it deserved under the treating physician rule, we REVERSE the decision of the district court and REMAND for proceedings consistent with this opinion.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on December 2, 2013 05:59 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions