Bowen v. Yuckert
United States Supreme Court
482 U.S. 137 (1987)
Janet Yuckert (plaintiff) applied for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA), alleging disability due to dizziness, vision problems, and headaches. The Social Security Act (Act), 42 U.S.C. § 301 et seq., provided that a claimant was entitled to disability benefits if she had medical impairments so severe that she was unable to perform her past work or, considering her age, education, and work experience, she was unable to perform any other available work. Regulations promulgated by Secretary of Health and Human Services Bowen (Secretary) (defendant) provided for a five-step review process. At the second step, under the severity regulation, a claimant was required to show that a severe impairment rendered her unable to perform basic work activities. Otherwise, the evaluation process would terminate at step two, and the SSA would not consider the remaining steps in the sequential review process. Yuckert’s application was denied initially and on reconsideration. Following a hearing, an SSA administrative law judge (ALJ) concluded that Yuckert was ineligible for benefits because her impairments were not severe. After the SSA denied Yuckert’s request for further review, Yuckert sought review of the denial in federal district court. The district court affirmed, ruling that the SSA’s determination was supported by substantial evidence. Yuckert appealed. The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed, reasoning that the Act required the SSA to consider both a claimant’s medical issues and the relevant vocational factors of age, education, and work experience before making a disability determination. The United States Supreme Court granted review on this issue.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Powell, J.)
Concurrence (O’Connor, J.)
Dissent (Blackmun, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 174,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.