Case 3:12-cv-01800-N-BH Document 22 Filed 09/20/13 Page 1 of 3 PageID 567
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS
§ Civil Action No. 3:12-CV-1800-N (BH)
CAROLYN W. COLVIN,
ACTING COMMISSIONER OF THE
SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION, §
§ Referred to U.S. Magistrate Judge
Before the Court are the Findings, Conclusions, and Recommendations of the United States
Magistrate Judge (doc. 20 (FCR)) and Plaintiff’s objections thereto (doc. 21 (Obj.)). After
reviewing all relevant matters of record in this case, including the FCR and Plaintiff’s objections,
the Court finds that the Findings and Conclusions of the Magistrate Judge are correct and they are
accepted as the Findings and Conclusions of the Court.
The Court reviews the pleadings, filings and records of the case, and the FCR of the
Magistrate Judge de novo. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Montgomery v. Astrue, No. 3:09-CV-1194-O,
2010 WL 3583380, at *1 (N.D. Tex. Sept. 13, 2010). In addition, the scope of judicial review of an
Administrative Law Judge’s (ALJ) decision to deny benefits is “limited to determining whether the
decision is supported by substantial evidence in the record and whether the proper legal standards
were used in evaluating the evidence.” Castillo v. Barnhart, 325 F.3d 550, 551 (5th Cir. 2003)
(quoting Villa v. Sullivan, 895 F.2d 1019, 1021 (5th Cir.1990)); Montgomery, 2010 WL 3583380,
Case 3:12-cv-01800-N-BH Document 22 Filed 09/20/13 Page 2 of 3 PageID 568
Plaintiff contends that the ALJ erred in finding that his mental disorder did not meet the
severity criteria of Listing 12.05 for intellectual disability (mental retardation) because the ALJ
made “no findings whatsoever regarding Plaintiff’s mental retardation and whether the evidence of
record demonstrate[d] that he ... had significantly subaverage intellectual functioning and deficits
in adaptive behavior prior to the age of 22.” (Obj. at 2.) He claims this was legal error under Audler
v. Astrue, 501 F.3d 446, 448 (5th Cir. 2007).
The “introductory paragraph” of Listing 12.05 requires that the claimant exhibit
“significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning with deficits in adaptive functioning
initially manifested during the developmental period; i.e., the evidence demonstrates or supports
onset of the impairment before age 22.” See 20 C.F.R. pt. 404, subpt. P, app. 1 § 12.05A (2012)
(emphasis added). Under the Social Security Act, “mental” impairment is “an impairment that
results from ... psychological abnormalities which are demonstrable by medically acceptable clinical
and laboratory diagnostic techniques.” 42 U.S.C.A. § 423(d)(3) (West 2004); Gibbons v. Colvin, No.
3:12-CV-0427-BH, 2013 WL 1293902, at *16 (N.D. Tex. Mar. 30, 2013).
Here, Plaintiff claims that his mental disorder met Listing 12.05 based on his lower IQ scores
during Dr. Horton’s evaluation and his testimony that he was enrolled in special education classes
in high school (i.e., that he had subaverage general intellectual functioning with deficits in adaptive
functioning initially manifested before age 22). (Pl. Br. (doc. 16-1) at 4–5); (Obj. at 2).
Nevertheless, Plaintiff failed to demonstrate, “by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory
diagnostic techniques,”1 that his alleged mental impairment began before he turned 22. See 42
U.S.C.A. § 423(d)(3); 20 C.F.R. pt. 404, subpt. P, app. 1 § 12.05. Plaintiff did not even produce his
1 Plaintiff even concedes that all of “the consulting physicians ... provided evidence regarding Plaintiff’s
current mental status, not his past mental status.” (Obj. at 2.)
Case 3:12-cv-01800-N-BH Document 22 Filed 09/20/13 Page 3 of 3 PageID 569
high school records, contending that when he requested them from the school, he was told they were
not “there any more.” (R. at 32–33.) Because the ALJ was not required to consider, and much less
discuss, whether Plaintiff’s mental disorder met Listing 12.05, he did not err under Audler.
It is therefore ORDERED that the Findings, Conclusions, and Recommendation of the
United States Magistrate Judge are adopted. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary
Judgment, filed September 20, 2012 (doc. 16) is DENIED, Defendant’s Motion for Summary
Judgment, filed October 17, 2012 (doc. 17), is GRANTED, and the decision of the Commissioner
is wholly AFFIRMED.
SO ORDERED on this 20th day of September 2013.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE