Because you are disabled.

File for disability benefits.

Appeal your case.

How you presented your initial application was the best you could do at that time given what you knew and were told.

But, if you were not successful, appeal (1) because you are disabled and (2) because you can improve on your presentation.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Chronic Schizophrenia, Hallucinations, Bipolar Disorder and Poor Judgment.

On appeal, the claimant argued that the Administrative Law Judge’s residual functional capacity assessment was contrary to his treating psychiatrist’s opinion.

Among other errors, the district court found that the ALJ “misunderstood” the treating psychiatrist’s opinion where the doctor had stated that one of the claimant’s symptoms was “retardation.”  In fact the psychiatrist identified not retardation which is determined by an I.Q. test, but “psychomotor agitation or retardation.”

The court went on to define psychomotor retardation as a long established component of depression or bipolar disorder:  “in the depressive phase that is observable as marked speech abnormalities, such as lengthy pauses and lowered volume of speech; characteristic eye movements, such as fixed gaze and poor maintenance of eye contact; gross psychomotor slowing, including movement of the hands, legs, torso, and head, slumped posture, and increased self-touching, especially of the face.” (Citations omitted.)

In remanding the case, the court described the ALJ’s decision as “not consistent with the requirements of law and is not supported by substantial evidence.”


The code of federal regulations, 20 CFR, Appendix 1 to Subpart P of Part 404—Listing of Impairments, for listing 12.04, defines affective disorders as: “Characterized by a disturbance of mood, accompanied by a full or partial manic or depressive syndrome. Mood refers to a prolonged emotion that colors the whole psychic life; it generally involves either depression or elation.”

“Psychomotor agitation or retardation” is listed as a sign or symptom under section A of the listing.

Badi v. Commissioner of Social Security, Case No. 6:12-cv-1733-Orl-DAB (D. M.D. Fla., Orlando Div., March 6, 2014).

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