Thomas v. Social Security Administration

Filing 11

ORDER granting Motion to Consolidate Cases in Case No. 2:14CV00143 JTR and directing the Clerk to reassign that case to the docket of Judge Joe J. Volpe. Signed by Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray on 02/05/2015. (rhm)

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS EASTERN DIVISION LORENZO THOMAS V. PLAINTIFF NO. 2:14CV00143-JTR CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner, Social Security Administration DEFENDANT LORENZO THOMAS V. PLAINTIFF NO. 2:14CV00123-JJV CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner, Social Security Administration DEFENDANT ORDER Plaintiff, Lorenzo Thomas, has filed a Motion to Consolidate these two civil actions. He states that Case No. 2:14cv00123-JJV was initiated to seek judicial review of an Appeals Council decision denying benefits, dated October 17, 2014. The Appeals Council subsequently vacated that decision and issued a second decision denying benefits. Thomas states that Case No. 2:14cv00143-JTR is a duplicate of the earlier case, filed only for the purpose of protecting his appeal of the second Appeals Council decision. Since the administrative transcript has been filed and the parties are already into the briefing process in the first civil action, Thomas asks that the two cases be consolidated so his appeal may proceed in the first civil action. Although time has passed, the Commissioner has indicated no objection to consolidation. The issue in both cases is the validity of the Commissioner’s decision finding Thomas not disabled. Both cases involve the same set of facts and law. Under the circumstances, consolidation is proper. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 42(a). IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED THAT: 1. Thomas’s Motion to Consolidate (Doc. 5 in Case No.2:14cv00143-JTR) is granted. 2. Case No. 2:14cv00123-JJV and Case No. 2:14cv00143-JTR are hereby consolidated, to continue as one case under Case No. 2:12cv00123-JJV. 3. Case No. 2:12cv00123-JJV is designated as the lead case. Pleadings are to be filed in that case only. 4. The Clerk is directed to take the necessary steps to effect consolidation and make the appropriate reassignment. A copy of this Order will be filed in both cases. DATED this 5th day of February, 2015. _____________________________________ UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

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