SOCIAL SECURITY COLA SET TO INCREASE

Oct 5th, 2011 | By Sharon Shaw Elrod MSW EdD | Category: Social Security & Medicare

Cost of Living Increases for Seniors

Later this month, federal officials are expected to announce a raise in the COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment) for 58 million Social Security beneficiaries.  Seniors could receive as much as a 3 1/2% increase in 2012.  This is due to the increase in gas and consumable goods prices.

Federal regulations require comparing third-quarter CPI (Consumer price index) with the same period of time the previous year.  Based on August 2011 data, and if September 2011 is the same, we seniors can expect an increase in our Social Security benefits.
It has been four years since senior citizens received an increase in benefits.  In 2008 the COLA was 5.8%, the highest since 1982.

Seniors Suffered Financial Losses in Past Two Years

Although prices for consumable goods and services haven’t increased a lot in the past two years, health care costs have.  The out-of-pocket health care costs have risen dramatically in the past several years.  Because seniors typically experience increasing health issues, our costs go up both because of more health issues needing attention and the rising costs of health care.  It would appear we get hit with a ‘double-whammy’.

The financial loss for seniors is compounded by the inability for most of us to create a second income stream.  Millions of seniors live in a fixed income, and that is Social Security…  one of the many reasons the Health Care Act is so critical for our well-being and survival.  Health Care Act-Medicare-Social Security is the triad that insures a better life for 58 million senior citizens in the United States.



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