Iowa District Court Reverses ALJ
March 9, 2015. In this case on referral from another law office, the ALJ had found that plaintiff’s mental impairments were “severe” within the meaning of the regulations, but the RFC finding contained no mental limitation on his ability to work. Moreover, there was evidence of record strongly suggesting that the claimant needed a cane to stand/walk, which has implications for his ability to reach, handle and finger objects but the ALJ relied upon vocational testimony naming jobs which require frequent reaching and handling and fingering. The court remanded primarily on the basis of the mental impairment argument, notably declining to accept several explanations for the ALJ’s errors which did not appear in the decision itself, in violation of the “Chenery Rule”.