On January 15, 2012, Jeremy was found disabled as the result of his severe traumatic brain injury; vertigo astasia; abnormal gait; seizure disorder; migraine headache; obesity; post-traumatic stress disorder; cognitive disorder with hyper-vigilance; intrusive thoughts and images of traumatic events; major depressive disorder; irritable bowel syndrome; tinnitus; right should impairment; and hip pain.
Jeremy had initially filed a claim for disability April 17, 2012, which was initially denied on June 12, 2012, and at reconsideration on September 29, 2012. A hearing was requested June 17, 2013. Jeremy appeared at a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge in Tacoma, Washington on December 5, 2013. Jeremy was represented by John J. Chihak. A medical expert testified at the hearing.
Jeremy testified, at the hearing to significant mental and physical health impairments which cause him significant and debilitating limitations in performing basic work related activities. He testified that he previously worked in the military, and suffered a traumatic brain injury following an incident while deployed in Afghanistan. The claimant testified that he has been diagnosed with seizure disorder with memory loss, and endorsed post-traumatic stress disorder, anger, and depression. The claimant testified that he has difficulty interacting with others secondary to his traumatic brain injury, and endorsed frequent nightmares of watching his lieutenant’s hand get blown off by a grenade. Jeremy testified that his impairments cause him difficulty in reading, writing, doing math, and thinking clearly.
Chihak and Associates obtained medical evidence from Madagan Healthcare Systems as well as received letters of support from his medical providers which all corroborated and affirmed Jeremy’s incapacitating mental and physical impairments. At the hearing, a clinical psychologist medical expert hired by Social Security testified that Jeremy’s medical file did not support a finding of disability based on Social Security’s Listings of Impairments. The Administrative Law Judge dismissed the medical expert and disregarded his testimony, finding that Jeremy’s treating providers were in a better position to determine whether or not Jeremy’s conditions were so disabling that he could not work 40 hours a week or a comparable schedule. Accordingly, Jeremy’s disability claim was approved.