Social Security announces 1.6 percent COLA increase
November 1, 2019
Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for nearly 69 million Americans will increase 1.6 percent in 2020, the Social Security Administration announced in October.
The 1.6 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 63 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2020, according to an Oct. 10 press release from the Social Security Administration. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on Dec. 31, 2019, the press release stated. (Note: some people receive both Social Security and SSI benefits). The Social Security Act ties the annual COLA to the increase in the Consumer Price Index as determined by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Some other adjustments that take effect in January of each year are based on the increase in average wages. Based on that increase, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $137,700 from $132,900, according to the press statement.
The statement noted that Social Security and SSI beneficiaries are normally notified by mail in early December about their new benefit amount. Most people who receive Security payments will be able to view their COLA notice online through their my Security account. People may create or access their my Security account online at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.
For Social Security beneficiaries receiving Medicare, Social Security will not be able to compute their new benefit amount until after the Medicare premium amounts for 2020 are announced. Final 2020 benefit amounts will be communicated to beneficiaries in December through the mailed COLA notice and my Social Security’s Message Center.