The cost of living adjustments released by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics stands at 5.9%, the highest in the last 4 decades. For Americans, it directly translates to a huge jump in the maximum money they can claim in Social Security every year. The maximum amount that can be claimed this year is $4,124 per month.
Boost V/S inflation
Even though the boost is quite high compared to the previous years, the year-on-year inflation at 7% is dwarfing the jump. And as the trend continues, it is highly unlikely for the increase to translate into the purchasing power of the common citizens.
How to get SS benefits?
Social Security Scheme is a need-based policy of the American govt. to provide for the basic costs of living of the needy individuals. Currently, it covers people above the age of 62 or those who are blind/disabled.
One’s social security is calculated based on the age they claim their social security benefit and the average of their income during the most productive 35 years of their career. So, if you want to claim the highest possible support, the key is to remain constructively engaged in a job for at least 35 years and wait till 70 to claim the benefits.
If you retired before 65 and claimed your SS benefits, you will get less when compared to that of a 70-year-old person.
In 2021, one retiring at 70 received $3,895 per month while someone filing for benefits at 62 would only get $2,324 per month. One claiming it at 66 (at the exact retirement age), the benefit stands at $3,148 per month.
COLA to affect 2022 benefits
The COLA benefits in 2022 are set to increase not only the pensions but disability insurance as well. The increase is $40 for the non-blind recipients taking their benefit to $1,350 per month. For the blind recipients, the increase is $70 taking the total benefit to $2,260 per month.
The Supplemental Support Income (SSI) federal standard payments are also set to see a jump of $47 taking the amount to $841 per month. For couples, the increase is $70 per month taking the total to $1,261.