Alabama ALJ’s Opinion Reversed due to inadequate evaluation of Claimant’s Mental Conditions

ssdisabilityThe Disability Lawyers (Auburn, AL) of Carmichael Law Group LLC are pleased to report in Kelley v. Colvin, the Honorable Judge Walker of the United States District Court, Middle District of Alabama recently agreed with our brief that the ALJ’s decision failed to properly reject the medical opinions expressed by the treating psychiatrist.

In the brief before the Court, our Columbus, GA Social Security Disability Attorney argued that the ALJ improperly rejected the treating psychiatrist’s medical opinion.  Further compounding that legal error, we argued that the Administrative Law Judge failed to obtain the opinion of a qualified psychiatrist and instead improperly played both Judge and mental health professional by determining himself the work-place limitations imposed by the diagnosed mental conditions.

In agreeing with our positions, the Court determined that “the ALJ’s decision in the present case does not reflect that he considered all of the probative evidence.  Additionally, neither the regulations assigning responsibility for determining RFC to the ALJ nor the case law holding that an ALJ may do so without a functional capacity assessment by a physician overcomes the overarching principle that the ALJ’s decision must be supported by substantial evidence.  We are most pleased that the Hon. Judge Walker determined that the ALJ failed to properly evaluate our client’s Social Security Disability claim.