Are there any cost of living adjustments or other changes to Social Security payments for 2016?

In 1973, legislation was passed to address the financial changes of a fluctuating economy. The legislation, which focused primarily on supplemental income and disability payments, amended the Social Security Act to provide benefit adjustments for yearly inflation. As the cost of consumer goods increased, SSI benefits should increase as well in order to keep pace. The basic assumption is that disability is supposed to offset living costs, so if those living costs increase, benefits should also increase.

The SSA determines a cost of living (COL) adjustment by taking data from the previous year’s Consumer Price Index (CPI). The data is then entered into a specifically designed formula to compute the COL percentage. This percentage is then used to calculate yearly benefit increases.

2016 Disability Pay Changes

The data taken from 2015’s CPI concluded that the cost of living for 2016 will remain the same as 2015, thus, an adjustment does not need to be made. In other words, the cost of consumer products has not increased over the past year, maintaining the COL. What does this mean for you? It means that since the COL didn’t change, neither will your monthly disability checks. The 2016 Social Security benefit breakdown is as follows:

  • Maximum SSI amount (for retirees) - $2,639 per month ($24 decrease from 2015)
  • SSI Federal payment standard (single) - $733 per month
  • SSI Federal standard (family - spouse and one or more children) - $1,100
  • Average disability payment (single) - $1,166 per month
  • Average disability payment (family) - $1,983 per month  

For more information on your social security benefits, or to talk to someone about unanticipated changes in your benefits, contact us today! Our thorough knowledge and experience with Social Security Insurance can help you successfully file claims, appeal changes and denials, as well as give you the financial peace of mind you need this year. Don’t hesitate any longer. We’re waiting to hear from you!