Author: Catherine M. Callery (Kate)| Louise M. Tarantino

In another example of David Ralph’s perseverance, he just obtained a victory going back to a 2002 application – and it only took three hearings and two Appeals Council remands!

The claimant suffers from severe Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) depression; mitral valve prolapse and tachycardia not amenable to further treatment and which contradicts any psychotropic medication at all; borderline IQ; and day treatment five day/week, for two to four hours per day.  The first ALJ rejected the opinions of the treating physicians declaring their patient disabled. According to David, the ALJ could only see the claimant as a fully functional borderline IQ worker, despite all the evidence to the contrary.  The Appeals Council admonished the ALJ twice about, among other errors, his failure to recontact the treating physicians.

The case was finally remanded to a different ALJ.  [See HALLEX I-2-1-55J requiring remand to a different ALJ after two hearings.]  Interestingly enough, the second ALJ then put the burden on David to follow up with the treating sources, and gave him very little time to do so – despite the length of time that the case had languished at ODAR following the remand order.  Needless to say, David did that with a vengeance, and found, as he put, some very loquacious doctors.  As a result, he gave the ALJ no choice but to accept their opinions.

David notes that he has logged over one hundred hours on this case.  Once again, lucky for the claimant to have found David!