Blea v. Colvin

Filing 29

ORDER that the Motion to Reconsider ECF No. 26 is GRANED; case is REMANDED to the SSA for further proceedings consistent with the settlement. Signed by Judge Robert C. Jones on 2/14/2018. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - KW)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF NEVADA ______________________________________ ) ) ANDREA BLEA, ) ) Plaintiff, ) ) vs. ) ) NANCY A. BERRYHILL, ) ) Defendant. ) ) 3:14-cv-00582-RCJ-VPC ORDER 12 13 On June 23, 2011, Plaintiff protectively filed claims for Social Security Disability 14 Insurance and Supplemental Security Income benefits under Titles II and XVI of the Social 15 Security Act, respectively. The state agency denied the claims on October 27, 2011 and denied 16 reconsideration on March 29, 2012. On January 16, 2013, Plaintiff and her attorney appeared 17 before an Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) of the Social Security Administration (“SSA”). 18 The ALJ ruled on April 23, 2013, finding that Plaintiff had not been disabled at any time 19 between June 9, 2010 and the date of the decision. The Appeals Council denied review on 20 September 18, 2014, and the ALJ’s decision became the final decision of the Commissioner. 21 Plaintiff filed the present Complaint for judicial review in this Court on December 18, 22 2014. The Commissioner answered, Plaintiff moved to remand, and the Commissioner moved to 23 affirm. The Magistrate Judge recommended affirmance, and the Court adopted the 24 1 of 2 1 recommendation on January 5, 2016. Plaintiff did not appeal but has now asked the Court to 2 reconsider under Rule 60(b)(6), arguing that she is eligible for a new hearing before the ALJ 3 according to a recent notification she received from the Commissioner. Specifically, in Hart v. 4 Colvin, 3:15-cv-623 (N.D. Cal.), a plaintiff class sued the Commissioner arguing that Dr. Frank 5 Chen’s consultative examination reports were flawed. As part of a settlement, the Commissioner 6 has agreed to provide new hearings to claimants who were examined by Dr. Chen between 7 January 1, 2011 and December 31, 2013 and who received unfavorable decisions. Plaintiff 8 underwent a consultative examination by Dr. Chen on September 30, 2011. The ALJ in this case 9 noted that she assigned “great weight” to Dr. Chen’s assessment, obviating any potential 10 harmless error issues. The notice sent from the Commissioner to Plaintiff indicates that if she 11 had filed an appeal to federal court and lost, as here, she had 90 days from the date she received 12 the notice to file a motion for relief from judgment. The notice is dated September 25, 2017, and 13 the present motion was timely filed December 20, 2017. The Commissioner has not timely 14 responded to the present motion. CONCLUSION 15 16 IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Motion to Reconsider (ECF No. 26) is GRANTED, 17 and the case is REMANDED to the SSA for further proceedings consistent with the settlement. 18 IT IS SO ORDERED. 19 February January, Dated this 4th day of14, 2018. 2018. 20 21 _____________________________________ ROBERT C. JONES United States District Judge 22 23 24 2 of 2

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