According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), approximately 70 million Americans will see a 1.3% increase in Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for 2021. Much of this revolves around the rise in the Department of Labor’s Consumer Price Index (CPI-W), which changes as a measure of an increase in the cost of living for the average American. As a result, Social Security’s cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) rises to help defray these costs.
What Will 2021 SSI Amounts Be?
According to the SSA, the monthly maximum Federal amounts will be $794 for an eligible individual, $1,191 for an eligible individual with an eligible spouse and $397 for an essential person. Annual amounts are also available to review at the above link.
What is the Fastest Way I Can Find Out My New Benefit Amount?
You can log into your My Social Security Account and access your new benefit letter digitally as soon as early December (the SSA will still mail you one unless you change that setting in the Preferences tab). If you don’t currently have an online account, you need to set one up by November 18 to receive the digital notice.
Are There Any Other Changes Worth Noting?
Generally speaking, the maximum taxable earning amounts are also going up. However, unless political changes say otherwise, Social Security tax rates will not change from 2020 to 2021.
What Does this Mean for the Average Beneficiary?
All retired workers can expect to receive $20 more per month as a result of the COLA adjustment. All disabled workers should see a $16 per month increase. This table outlines other general expectations for benefit adjustments.
It goes without saying that the ongoing economic impact of the pandemic and other world events could change additional Social Security, SSI and SSDI guidelines as we head into 2021. If you’re considering applying for benefits or already have, it’s worth noting that you could be initially denied based on stricter application standards. If that’s the case and you feel that you were incorrectly denied, it may be time to consult a qualified Social Security claims attorney. Call Schott Law today at (509) 328-5789 to learn more and schedule a free consultation.