Kennedy v. Colvin

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Administrative Law
  • Date Filed: 12-31-2013
  • Case #: 12-55430
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Fisher for the Court; Circuit Judge Clifton and District Judge Singleton
  • Full Text Opinion

When applying for supplemental security income (SSI), a claimant must meet each of the qualifications listed in Listing 12.05C of the Social Security Act. A claimant many not claim that is over-qualification in some areas makes up for under-qualification in others.

Richard Kennedy applied for supplemental security income benefits ("SSI") because of his physical and mental impairments. To qualify for SSI, a claimant must satisfy all of the five steps in Listing 12.05C of 20 C.F.R. § 416.920(a)(4)(iii),. Step three of these is at issue, which requires: (1) below-average intellectual functioning, which manifested before the age of 22; (2) an IQ score of 60-70 points; and (3) physical or other mental impairment which causes significant work-related difficulties. Kennedy, whose IQ is 71, does not qualify for SSI under these guidelines. On appeal of the administrative law judge's denial, claimant that the one point he is over the IQ requirement is negated by the fact that his physical conditions are so numerous and severe. The Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court's administrative law judge's decisions, finding that a claimant must present medical evidence that he qualifies for SSI, not just theoretical evidence, as Kennedy did here.

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