Bryson v. Social Security Administration Commissioner
ORDER denying 6 Defendant's Motion to Dismiss. Signed by Honorable Barry A. Bryant on March 8, 2012. (sh)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
JOHN MICHAEL BRYSON
Civil No. 3:11-cv-03063
MICHAEL J. ASTRUE
Commissioner, Social Security Administration
Pending now before this Court is Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss. ECF No. 6.1 Plaintiff has
responded to this motion. ECF No. 8. The parties have consented to the jurisdiction of a magistrate
judge to conduct any and all proceedings in this case, including conducting the trial, ordering the
entry of a final judgment, and conducting all post-judgment proceedings. ECF No. 5. Pursuant to
this authority, the Court finds as follows:
Defendant filed a Motion to Dismiss alleging Plaintiff’s complaint was untimely filed.
Defendant states the complaint was not filed within the statutory time limitation of sixty days
following the Commissioner’s notice to Plaintiff that his request for review was denied. According
to Defendant, the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff’s request for review on April 27, 2011. ECF No.
6. Defendant states Plaintiff, therefore, should have commenced his civil action on or before July
1, 2011. According to Defendant, this date includes the additional five days for receipt by mail, and
two additional days to reach the next non-weekend date. The Complaint in this case was actually
filed on August 2, 2011. ECF. No. 1.
The docket numbers for this case are referenced by the designation “ECF. No.”
The only civil action an individual may bring on any claim arising under Title II or Title XVI
of the Social Security Act is an action to review the final decision the Commissioner has made after
hearing the case. An individual must commence that action within sixty days after receiving notice
of the Commissioner’s final decision or within such further time as allowed by the Commissioner.
The Commissioner may extend the time for instituting a civil action upon a claimant’s request and
showing of good cause. See 42 U.S.C. 405(g); 20 C.F.R. § 422.210(c).
Plaintiff received notice the Appeals Council denied his request for review on April 27,
2011. ECF No. 6-1. Based on this, Plaintiff should have commenced his civil action on or before
July 1, 2011. This date includes the additional five days for receipt by mail and two additional days
to reach the next non-weekend date. Plaintiff filed his complaint on August 2, 2011. ECF No. 1.
According to Plaintiff’s counsel, he placed the Petition and all other necessary documents
relating to the instant action in the US mail on June 22, 2011, addressed to the Harrison Division of
the Western District of Arkansas. ECF No. 9-1. Plaintiff states this would have allowed for the suit
being filed prior to the July 1, 2011 deadline. ECF No. 9.
The Harrison Division of the Western District of Arkansas is an unstaffed courthouse. This
could cause a situation of Plaintiff’s petition being received prior to the July 1, 2011 deadline but
not being filed until a later date. Based on this, the Court finds good cause exists for the failure of
the complaint to be filed timely.2
The Court finds good cause exists for Plaintiff’s failure to timely file the complaint and
The Court notes its public web site indicates that all mail for the Harrison Division should be sent to
the Fayetteville Division of the Western District of Arkansas
Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss should be denied.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED Defendant’s Motion To Dismiss (ECF No. 6) is hereby
DENIED. Defendant is ordered to answer the complaint within thirty (30) days of the date of this
IT IS SO ORDERED this 8th day of March 2012.
s/ Barry A. Bryant
HON. BARRY A. BRYANT
U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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