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Banegas v. Heckler

United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
587 F. Supp. 549 (1984)


Facts

Rudolfo Banegas (plaintiff) suffered a serious back injury after a car accident. Banegas filed a claim for disability insurance benefits with the Secretary of Health and Human Services (defendant). The Secretary denied the claim. Banegas requested a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ). At the hearing, a considerable amount of medical evidence showed Banegas was unable to engage in substantial gainful activity due to his serious back problem. A medical adviser reviewed the evidence and testified that Banegas was in fairly severe physical pain. At the conclusion of the hearing, the ALJ followed Banegas and his attorney. The ALJ observed Banegas cross the street at a fast pace without his cane. Banegas did not appear to have any difficulty getting into a car. The ALJ concluded Banegas’s impairment was not as severe as asserted and denied Banegas’s claim. The Appeals Council affirmed the ALJ’s decision. Banegas filed an action in United States District Court for the Western District of Texas to review the denial of his claim.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Hudspeth, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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