Samon v. Commissioner of Social Security
OPINION & ORDER Adopting Report and Recommendation 17 Granting deft's 16 Motion for Summary Judgment and denying pltf's motion for summary judgment 12 . Signed by District Judge Nancy G. Edmunds. (CBet)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
JEFFREY JOHN SAMON,
Case No. 16-10889
Honorable Nancy G. Edmunds
COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY,
OPINION AND ORDER ACCEPTING AND ADOPTING THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION 
Plaintiff Jeffrey1 Samon seeks review of Defendant Commissioner of Social Security's
determination that he is not entitled to social security benefits. The Court referred the
matter to Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Stafford, and on January 17, 2017, the Magistrate
Judge issued a Report and Recommendation (R&R) that the Court affirm Defendant's
decision. On January 31, 2017, Plaintiff filed one objection to the R&R (Dkt. 18), which the
Court considers here. For the reasons stated below, the Court OVERRULES Plaintiff's
objection and ACCEPTS AND ADOPTS the R&R. As a result, Defendant's motion for
summary judgment is GRANTED , Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment is DENIED
, Defendant's decision is AFFIRMED, and the case is DISMISSED.
Standard of Review
When a party objects to portions of a magistrate judge's report and recommendation
on a dispositive motion, the Court reviews such portions de novo. Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b).
The parties' submissions refer to Plaintiff as "Jeffery" and "Jeffrey" with similar
frequency. The Court uses Jeffrey because it appears in the caption of the Complaint.
However, only specific objections that pinpoint a source of error are entitled to de novo
review. Mira v. Marshall, 806 F.2d 636, 637 (6th Cir. 1986). General objections, or those
that merely challenge the magistrate judge's ultimate determinations, have "the same
effects as would a failure to object." Howard v. Sec'y of Health and Human Servs., 932
F.2d 505, 509 (6th Cir. 1991). That is, such objections are invalid, and the Court may treat
them as if they were waived. See Bellmore-Byrne v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 2016 WL
5219541, at *1 (E.D. Mich. Sept. 22, 2016) (citing id.).
Plaintiff's objection to the R&R pinpoints only one source of alleged error: the
statement that "a diagnosis says nothing about its disabling effects." (Dkt. 18, at 2.) But
that quote accurately reflects the law, so an objection to that statement alone lacks merit.
Higgs v. Bowen, 880 F.2d 860, 863 (6th Cir. 1988) ("The mere diagnosis of arthritis, of
course, says nothing about the severity of the condition."); see also Lee v. Comm'r of Soc.
Sec., 529 F. App'x 706, 713 (6th Cir. 2013) ("[N]ot every diagnosable impairment is
necessarily disabling."). And the rest of Plaintiff's submission fares no better, for it amounts
only to a general objection to the R&R.
Indeed, the remainder of Plaintiff's objection merely announces various disagreements
with the Magistrate Judge's ultimate determinations.
Sometimes it challenges the
conclusion that substantial evidence supports a finding that Plaintiff is capable of working.
(See Dkt. 18, at 4.) Other times it contests the determination that the Administrative Law
Judge permissively granted little weight to Plaintiff's treating physician. (See id. at 3, 8.)
But never does it identify a specific erroneous finding of fact or application of law. As a
result, the Court finds that Plaintiff has failed to raise a meritorious argument and overrules
his objection. Howard, 932 F.2d at 509; see also Ervin v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 2012 WL
4427987, at *1 (E.D. Mich. Sept. 25, 2012) (overruling a plaintiff's objections where they
"essentially dispute[d] the ALJ's weighing of the evidence and object[ed] to the Magistrate
Judge's failure to adopt Plaintiff's views in that regard.").
Given that the only objection to the R&R has been overruled, the Court ACCEPTS
AND ADOPTS the Magistrate Judge's R&R. Accordingly, Defendant's motion for summary
judgment is GRANTED, Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment is DENIED, Defendant's
decision is AFFIRMED, and this case is DISMISSED.
s/Nancy G. Edmunds
Nancy G. Edmunds
United States District Judge
Dated: February 15, 2017
I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing document was served upon counsel of record
on February 15, 2017, by electronic and/or ordinary mail.
s/Carol J. Bethel
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