Recipients of social security benefits will not receive a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in 2016 due to lack of inflation. Many blame a correlation between low gas prices and the inflation rate concerning the absence of a COLA for next year. The COLA is based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers which is computed in accordance with statistics provided by the Bureau of Labor which measures price changes in items such as food, clothing, housing, transportation, etc. Fuel prices have dropped by 23% since last year, lowering inflation. This is only the third time in forty years that there has not been an increase, including in 2010 and 2011.
The COLA affects 70 million Americans, with Social Security benefits being provided to 1/5th of the population including Social Security Disability (SSD). The beneficiaries include federal retirees, disabled workers, their spouses and children, and disabled veterans. Additionally, 8 million people receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI)- a financial needs-based program for the disabled. This program would also be affected as the program recipients will also see no COLA increase.
While benefits will not be increasing this year, SSI/SSD are important benefits to disabled workers. If you suffer from pain so severe that you cannot work, and have medical evidence attesting to your condition, you may be entitled to receive Social Security Disability Insurance. Contact an attorney who is experienced in helping clients obtain the benefits they deserve. Call The Law Offices of McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson, & Riordan, LLP at (866)557-7500.