Cost of Living Adjustments to Social Security Disability Benefits
If you are receiving payments through Social Security Disability Insurance benefits just to get by, you probably already know that every penny counts. If you have been an American consumer for more than a couple years, you probably also know that the price of just about everything and anything has been steadily been rising each year for many years. This is known as inflation, or the rise of prices as a currency’s value decreases.
For most people, paying another 20 cents for a pack of gum is an inconvenience at worst. For people relying on SSDI benefits, it can be indicative of a much greater problem. If the cost of gum has gone up 20% in 5 years, you can assume that the cost of living has also been adjusted in much the same way.
Cost of living refers to what it costs, on average, to live comfortably in your state, city, or county. This does not consider superfluous purchases or most recreational expenses; it only considers what you would have to pay each year to be safe, sound, and healthy.
Cost of living expenses usually include:
- Food and water
- Housing and shelter
- Clothing and bedding
- Necessary medical care and hygiene
- Cost of education
- Transportation necessary for employment
Do SSDI Benefits Inflate As Well?
Between the years 1975 and 2008, the Social Security Administration (SSA) made a point to study inflation in the country and adjust cost of living benefits accordingly. For 2009 and 2010, the system was halted as the SSA reviewed how it handled cost of living adjustments, or COLA. At the end of 2011, they instituted an arbitrary hike of 3.6% and halted it again.
Currently, if you are having difficulty making ends meet due to inflated cost of living in your area and low SSDI benefits payouts, there is no guarantee that the SSA will react quickly to alleviate the problem. Instead, you may have to bring your unique case to the attention of the SSA. At Disability Action Advocates (DAA), our Las Vegas Social Security Disability lawyers can help you in your pursuit of increased benefits due to increases in cost of living expenses.
Call toll-free at (888) 421-8705 for a free consultation today.