Reply
Newbie

Social Security Cost of Living

Is anyone advocating a cost of living increase for seniors. I here all of this talk about people not being able to live on a miimun wage of less than $15.00 per hour. The average senior on social security receives about $7.00 per hour based on a 40 hour week by comparison. I haven't heard of anyone standing up for people whose primary source of income is social security. We worked hard paid into the social security fund, and the government stole the money to fund other programs. Our cost of living goes up every year, and yet no cola increase. Help!

Contributor

two things: the cap placed on SS payments on earnings must be eliminated soon if SS is to survive another decade...and, the income limits after which taxes are paid on SS benefits should be doubled, since there has been no adjustment for inflation for 25 years!! ...what, at one time (and maybe still) the IRS called "substantial income" no longer is...these are simple steps to keep SS alive and beneficial into the coming years...why these two things have not been done already boggles my mind...

0 Kudos
2,781 Views
0
Report
Contributor

Actually we do give a tremendous amount of country welfare to the tune of 100's of billions. Israel now gets close to 8 billion a year. And the above is only country bribe welfare. It doesn't include billions in military aid. Afganistan and Iran are into the trillions in waste. And then of course the ponzi scam of using Social Security and Medicare collected funds as a back door income tax through accounting trickery.

0 Kudos
2,423 Views
1
Report
Trusted Contributor


@davidw994077 wrote:

Actually we do give a tremendous amount of country welfare to the tune of 100's of billions. Israel now gets close to 8 billion a year. And the above is only country bribe welfare. It doesn't include billions in military aid. Afganistan and Iran are into the trillions in waste. And then of course the ponzi scam of using Social Security and Medicare collected funds as a back door income tax through accounting trickery.


The 2017 U.S. budget for foreign aid is $50 billion, a little over 1% of the total U.S. budget.  It is not 100's of billions.  Most Americans overestimate the foreign aid budget to be 25-30% of the total US budget.  Compare that to the $1.5 Trillion spent on Social Security and Medicare annually.  The 2% SS COLA increase is going to cost a minimum of $18 Billion in 2018.  And Israel's foreign aid amount is $3.1 Billion, not $8 billion.  It might reach that much with private aid but I haven't found a definitive amount for private donation aid to Israel.

For your research pleasure:

https://explorer.usaid.gov/aid-dashboard.html  For total aid.

https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd  For by country.

0 Kudos
2,423 Views
0
Report

 When are we going to quit giving to foreign countries and start giving to American citizens especially our seniors don’t earn enough to even live eat or have proper medication it’s a disgrace 

0 Kudos
2,375 Views
3
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@richardpc373032 wrote:

 When are we going to quit giving to foreign countries and start giving to American citizens especially our seniors don’t earn enough to even live eat or have proper medication it’s a disgrace 


We really don't give much foreign aid.  

Social Security was never meant to be a person's total retirement income.  

Anybody that thought they could better sign up for all the government programs they can to make ends meet -

 

Using your two items from above -

Eat - SNAP, food banks, charities

Medication - Medicaid, charities

0 Kudos
2,380 Views
2
Report
Contributor

Snap is a joke, most seniors only qualify for $16. in food stamps in Florida. Food banks give small quantities of food and it takes going to many food banks to get enough for a month. Thanks to the FED [a private bank] we suffer from hyper inflation. The dollar only has less than a nickel of purchasing power. Only the very poor get Medicaid in Florida. My friends post office pension is double what I get because it was invested. The government has been siphoning funds out of Social Security for decades through accounting trickery to fund the government through Treasury.
0 Kudos
2,431 Views
1
Report
Trusted Contributor


@davidw994077 wrote:
Snap is a joke, ....... My friends post office pension is double what I get because it was invested. ...

Your friend's pension is based on the federal employee pension system.  His federal pension deductions were invested in the same type of Treasury bonds as Social Security.  If he was on the older Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), the amount is a formula that approximates to "(Years service - 2) times 2% times the average high 3 years salary.  For example, (30 years - 2) * 2% * $50K avg = ~$28,000/yr or about $2333/mo.  About 56% of the high 3 average salary.  Most CSRS retirees do not receive SS because they never paid into it.  They may participate in the 401k style Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) without employing agency matching funds.

If he was under the 1984 new hired Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), the minimum is 1% per year times the high 3 year salary.  For the example above, his pension is about 30%, plus anything withdrawn from his personal TSP with employing agency matching funds.  FERS retirees also pay into Social Security and receive a SS benefit check as well.

0 Kudos
2,435 Views
0
Report
Newbie

So much for the biggest raise in 6 years. They took all they needed to raise the premium from $109 to $134 and gave me the rest. Less than half is what I was left with.

0 Kudos
1,804 Views
27
Report
Contributor

in the new bulletin we received today you said that there was a law that prevents medicare premiums from cutting into Social Security Benefits.  What is that law and how do we go from here?  They raised my premiums from $109 to $124

0 Kudos
1,938 Views
17
Report
Contributor

They raised my Medicare from $109.00 to $134.00 and I have had the same amount in my check for the last four years.  Something is not right here. We are being bilked and paying for people who are in this country illegally.

0 Kudos
3,248 Views
9
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@Jodina1103 wrote:

They raised my Medicare from $109.00 to $134.00 and I have had the same amount in my check for the last four years.  Something is not right here. We are being bilked and paying for people who are in this country illegally.


No, Jodina1103

You have been protected by the Social Security Hold-Harmless clause preventing your SS benefit amount from being less than the year before because Medicare Part B premiums have gone up.

 

The standard Part B premium for 2017 (this year) was $134, in 2016 it was $122 per month -  so since there was a 2% COLA for 2018, you are just catching up.

 

Illegals don't get Medicare - no part of it.  Part B cost are just going up  - after all we do have 10,000 baby boomers retiring every day for the next few years, plus 50 a 60 million of us already in the system, medical cost for all of us is going up - the older we get, the more health care we will use.

 

i have described several times here that Part B is funded by our premiums and the taxpayers.  Our premiums represent about 25% of the programs cost and matched with 75% taxpayer money from the general fund to cover the complete cost of Medicare Part B.

 

Your payroll taxes for Medicare while you were working, matched by your employer - only covers Medicare Part A and it is going broke because it is a pay as you go type program and there are not enough workers supporting this system compared to the number using it.

 

So when you hear our legislature talk about reigning in healthcare cost, now you know why.  Or we will just have to ask everybody to pay MORE - workers, those on Medicare.  Seniors with higher incomes already pay more in premiums for Medicare Part B and Part D.

0 Kudos
4,590 Views
8
Report
Contributor

I appreciate the reply, but am smart enough to know that the government has been looting Medicare and Social Security for years and years.  As far as 10,000 people joining a day as mentioned, I would have to see the tally on that one. Senior citizens are dying everyday so they will not be collecting SS and Medicare.  This evens the playing field.  Just read that they are sending billions to Israel and why not spend that on the senior citizen population in America who are struggling to make ends meet. Absolute disgrace what is going on and they pick on the most vulnerable of citizens.

Newbie

I agree Jordina. I remember a time since between the 1960's and now when the federal government did "borrow" money from the funds that were in the Social Security surplus that was suppose to be there to help pay SS benefits. I believe this happened more than once. Now granted if paid back these funds would probably not add too many years, but it was suppose to be paid back. Also if the income top amount for paying Social Security out of paychecks was raised so that everyone paid the same percentage of their income this would help tremendously. Why should those who make below the top figure for Social Security have to pay SS out of all they make while upper income folks don't? That is a solution to most of the funding instead of cutting benefits!

Honored Social Butterfly

Plong wrote-Why should those who make below the top figure for Social Security have to pay SS out of all they make while upper income folks don't?  --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The upper income pay the maximum payout for SS on earned income($128,400). Most Americans don`t earn that much and pay much less on a yearly basis then those who do. They also receive less when they do start collecting -62 0r 67.  Just the fairest system the government can come up with.

0 Kudos
2,584 Views
0
Report
Trusted Contributor


@Jodina1103 wrote:

I appreciate the reply, but am smart enough to know that the government has been looting Medicare and Social Security for years and years.  As far as 10,000 people joining a day as mentioned, I would have to see the tally on that one. Senior citizens are dying everyday so they will not be collecting SS and Medicare.  This evens the playing field.  Just read that they are sending billions to Israel and why not spend that on the senior citizen population in America who are struggling to make ends meet. Absolute disgrace what is going on and they pick on the most vulnerable of citizens.


As you say, people do die every day, but it isn't a "level playing field."  The net effect is that the number of SS beneficiaries is increasing currently at a rate of approximately 1 million per year, or a net 2700 a day.  This has been going on for almost a decade.  Link to SS beneficiary totals:

https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/OASDIbenies.html

 

As far as the "billions to Israel", see my post below with links that show the foreign aid to Israel is $3.1 Billion.  That is barely over 1 day of SS benefits, or $4 a month per beneficiary.  

Honored Social Butterfly
Honored Social Butterfly


@easyed598 wrote:



Social Security Beneficiaries Hit Record 61,859,250


Interesting article and data - graphic was kind of scary.

Not so very long ago, there were upwards of 5 workers supporting each beneficiary.

 

May we ( all 62 million of us) live long and prosper.

Ha,Ha,Ha . . . . . 

Hope we all have some other retirement funds to fall back upon cause I don't see any bipartisan efforts in our Congress to fix the problem.

Trusted Contributor


@GailL1 wrote:

@easyed598 wrote:



Social Security Beneficiaries Hit Record 61,859,250


Interesting article and data - graphic was kind of scary.

Not so very long ago, there were upwards of 5 workers supporting each beneficiary.,,,,

 


Here's the history of the worker v. beneficiary ratio.  I didn't realize we haven't seen 5:1 since the 1960s, almost 60 years.  However, I was a little surprised the ratio hovered at about 3.3:1 for years from 1975 through 2008 (34 years), then it started dropping when the recession hit.  Maybe the current economy surge will push it back up. We can only hope.  The nice thing about the article is it showed 2017 non-interest income to the Trust is increasing from a 2016 $53 Billion shortage to a projected 2017 $27 Billion shortage.  Unfortunately, it's a good/bad situation.  If the economy contiues to better and non-interest income starts paying annual expenses again, all interest and income tax revenue to the Trust will return to increasing the National Debt by $150-200 Billion a year, up from the current $30+ Billion per year now.

 

https://www.ssa.gov/history/ratios.html

0 Kudos
4,477 Views
0
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@Jodina1103 wrote:

I appreciate the reply, but am smart enough to know that the government has been looting Medicare and Social Security for years and years.  As far as 10,000 people joining a day as mentioned, I would have to see the tally on that one. Senior citizens are dying everyday so they will not be collecting SS and Medicare.  This evens the playing field.  Just read that they are sending billions to Israel and why not spend that on the senior citizen population in America who are struggling to make ends meet. Absolute disgrace what is going on and they pick on the most vulnerable of citizens.


Pew Research Center Fact Tank: 12/29/2010 - Baby Boomers Retire

Roughly 10,000 Baby Boomers will turn 65 today, and about 10,000 more will cross that threshold every day for the next 19 years.

 

Sure some are dying off but for the most part we are living longer and longer, especially women.

 

Medicare (Part A) and Social Security are both Trust Funds so no money is coming out except for benefits.  But we do need to figure out what we are gonna do about both of them because the current revenue stream into these programs are not enought to sustain them for the long term.

 

Nobody has been looting Social Security or Medicare - the balance sheets are there for all to see.

What goes in, from where it comes in, where it goes and how much is remaining in the Trust Funds.  In the case of Social Security, the Trust Fund balance is located in Special Treasuries, redeemed when necessary to pay benefits when revenues collected are short.

Here is the balance sheet for Social Security

SSA: Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance Trust Funds, 1957-2016

 

If you read the Trustee Reports issued annually, you will see that unless something is done, by about 2029, for Medicare (Part A) and by about 2034 for Social Security, we will be forced by the SS law to make cuts in benefits -

Social Security Administration: Status of the Social Security and Medicare Programs - Social Securit...

 

So if you want them to last - some thing has to be done asnd since they are closed Trust Funds only certain things can be done.  Increase revenues or decrease benefits or a little of both.

 

Contributor

mine went from $110 to $134!. last year it went from $104 to $110.
Trusted Contributor


@chasegeo wrote:
mine went from $110 to $134!. last year it went from $104 to $110.

But you forgot to mention that your SS Amount is going up about $40 a month.  And after the $24 Medicare increase your net check is going to be up about $16 more a month over last year, right?  The average person is going to see $0-$3 a month increase at best.

0 Kudos
2,368 Views
4
Report
Contributor

I got a$5 @ month.... AARP magazine mailed to your home had article

MEDICARE 2018 in their December issue  PAGE 4//READ IT 

stating that a $27 raise monthly to folks  getting $1377...   I got $5

WHy because they raised  the medicare part B too

AARP article stated that there is a law that prevents Medicare premiums from cutting into SS benefits...     DOES THE GOVERNMENT KNOW THIS??????   AND CAN AARP TELL ME THE NAME AND NUMBER OF THE LAW????   JAX

0 Kudos
2,415 Views
3
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@nyjaxer wrote:

@I got a$5 @ month.... AARP magazine mailed to your home had article

MEDICARE 2018 in their December issue  PAGE 4//READ IT 

stating that a $27 raise monthly to folks  getting $1377...   I got $5

WHy because they raised  the medicare part B too

AARP article stated that there is a law that prevents Medicare premiums from cutting into SS benefits...     DOES THE GOVERNMENT KNOW THIS??????   AND CAN AARP TELL ME THE NAME AND NUMBER OF THE LAW????   JAX


Reply from Gail1 . . . . 

---------------------------------

Not only does the government know this, they set it up to PROTECT YOU so that  if you are one of the beneficiaries protected by the "Hold Harmless Clause", your SS benefit ( the amount you actually receive ) will not be lower than what you got the previous year.

 

 HERE'S THE LAW - U.S. Code › Title 42 › Chapter 7 › Subchapter XVIII › Part B › § 1395r

 

The standard Part B premium has been $134 per month since January 2017 and $129 for 2016 - because of the "Hold Harmless Clause" your premiums were lower if you were a beneficiary protected by this Clause in those years.

 

Medicare Part B premiums are just the first cost taken from any COLA if your premiums are automatically deducted from your SS benefit - mandated by the government - same law, I am pretty sure.

 

The Social Security system includes two key provisions to help smooth cash flows for certain bene

1.  The first stipulates that if inflation is negative, the Social Security Cost-Of-Living Adjustment (COLA) can never be negative; at worst, the Social Security COLA has a floor of 0.0%.

2.  The second provision, often dubbed the “Hold Harmless” rule, and applicable to as many as 70% – 75% of Medicare enrollees, states that Social Security benefits payments cannot decrease due to rising Medicare Part B premiums; at worst, the Medicare premium increase is capped at the dollar amount of the Social Security COLA increase.

 

You got your 2018 COLA - and you got a new Part B premium and you still made a few bucks. 

 

Medicare Part B is insurance - a joint effort, a shared risk effort - a take one for the team effort - you are either now at your complete share (currently $134 per month) or closer to the 2018 rate.

 

Be grateful you are not a beneficiary that has to pay an Income Related Medicare Monthly Adjustment ( IRMMA) rate for premiums in Part B and Part D.  

Someday you maybe included in this group depending upon your income.

0 Kudos
2,473 Views
2
Report
Contributor

I got a $2 raise and then I noticed part B went up $13. My husband got a $24 raise, then the part B went up to..Wait for it..........wait for it..........you guessed it,$24.00! WOW!, AMAZING! We can't wait to spend all that cash.Gotta love our COLA.
0 Kudos
3,197 Views
1
Report
Honored Social Butterfly

CC wrote-I got a $2 raise and then I noticed part B went up $13. My husband got a $24 raise, then the part B went up to..Wait for it..........wait for it..........you guessed it,$24.00! WOW!, AMAZING! We can't wait to spend all that cash.Gotta love our COLA.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------My wife got a $20 raise and I got a $32 dollar raise.  After Medicare toook their  cut with part B  increase in premiums we netted a total of $7.00 .I`m planning my cruise now.

0 Kudos
3,286 Views
0
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@bettyjh803151 wrote:

in the new bulletin we received today you said that there was a law that prevents medicare premiums from cutting into Social Security Benefits.  What is that law and how do we go from here?  They raised my premiums from $109 to $124


Actually, bettyjh803151, this part of the Social Security law is to your benefit because the actual Part B premium has been $ 134 per month since January 2017 and 2016 was, I am pretty sure $ 129 per month so the "hold harmless" part of the SS law has been helping you for going on 3-years counting 2018 since you are not up to the standard rate of $134 per month for Part B premiums.

 

In another thread on this board, I Describe how the hold harmless clause in The Social Security law works,gave some examples and a formula for people to use to see where they stand.  It has been this way for a long time and unless a change is made in the law, it will continue.

 

You can find it under the thread entitled "Social Security and Medicare for 2018" on the Medicare and Insurane board.Here is a link to the thread for ease in accessing it - I tagged it with "SS Hold Harmless Claus"

http://community.aarp.org/t5/Medicare-Insurance/Social-Security-and-Medicare-for-2018/td-p/1945001 

0 Kudos
1,795 Views
0
Report
Contributor

My raise was $25, they gave the whole thing to Medicare, which brought it up to $134 a month,last year the raise was $4, that also went straight to Medicare, they should call it the cost of Medicare raise, because my cost of living is still going up with no increase in my SS check, I am living on about $1,000 a month.........For over 15 years I took care of my parents, in 1998 my step father died of cancer,he had no life insurance, and my mother was in a wheel chair at that time, I lost my job in the spring of 2000, and had to take money out of my savings and then finaly out of my retirement account ,to take care of her, she died 4 years ago, at 95 years old,  I learned to be quite frugal with my money, and I tend to keep what I have,as long as I can, I am over 70 years old now, healthy..thank God...but think every day, about how much longer, before the bills surpass the SS check, and I have to join her, I am all alone now so nobody will miss me anyways...........

0 Kudos
1,757 Views
2
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@bruceb158421 wrote:

My raise was $25, they gave the whole thing to Medicare, which brought it up to $134 a month,last year the raise was $4, that also went straight to Medicare, they should call it the cost of Medicare raise, because my cost of living is still going up with no increase in my SS check,

 

I am living on about $1,000 a month.........

 

  . . . . I learned to be quite frugal with my money, and I tend to keep what I have,as long as I can, I am over 70 years old now, healthy..thank God...but think every day, about how much longer, before the bills surpass the SS check, . . . . I am all alone now so nobody will miss me anyways...........


You just listed more reasons why you should check your eligibility for the MEDICARE SAVINGS PROGRAMS in your state.

 

I gave you the links to find the contacts in your state so that you could check your eligibility.

 

I gave you a Medicare.gov link giving you general details of each of the Medicare Savings Programs and what general eligibility requirements are required.

 

Depending upon which program you might qualify - it could save you money.

It could save you a good bit of money.  It could save you that $134 per month because if you are eligible, the state would pay your Part B premium of $134 per month.

 

If you qualify for dual eligibility - Medicare/Medicaid - you will not even need your supplemental plan because those two government program would cover your health care needs.

 

As far as your medication coverage (Medicare Part D) - The Social Security Administration should send you a letter stating that you MIGHT qualify for Extra Help with your Part D premiums and cost of medications.  If you have not seen the letter or if you have discarded it - check with the Social Security office on the program called "Extra Help".

 

Can you do this on your own?  If not, contact your State's Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), Counselors there should be able to help you.

Medicare.gov - Contact State SHIP

 

These programs have been put in place for those who are eligible and have needs.  But they aren't mind readers - you have to take action or have somebody help you with the process of checking it out and if eligible making application for the help.

 

Medicare Part B cost will probably continue to rise - your premium of $134 per month is your part of the 25% charged in premiums for the total cost of the program - the other 75% is paid by taxpayers.  But if you are eligible for one or several of these help programs because of your income and assets, why not at least see if you are eligible.

 

 

0 Kudos
1,762 Views
1
Report
Contributor

I thank you for your hepl......I delt with Medicade when I was caring for my mother...they wanted to control everything...they would not help me, but they did help her a little, after she died, they sent me letters saying I may qualify for this or that, but when I sent them all the info they wanted, they just said I did not qualify ...the reason ? I have a 31 year old motorcycle with 100,000 miles on it and a car with 162,000 miles on it, and I plan on keeping them, it is the only way I can get out once in a while to see other people, I still ride the motorcycle with the Patiot Guard Riders to Veteran,s funnerals and the car for shopping and getting around in the winter..less than 2.000 miles a year these days........I just got tired of asking for help and being turned down........so I just stopped asking.....When I signed up for Medicare, they sent me a letter, telling me I did not qualify for help on part D, and I couldn't afford anymore health insurance payments, so no part D.......I havent been to a doctor for myself for almost 20 years and I only take a very few over the counter medicens , I don't belive in running to the doctor, everytime I get the sniffels ..........Thank you again for the help !

0 Kudos
1,878 Views
0
Report
cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Users
Announcements

Online Community Refresh

Online Community has updated the site design in our discussions area to make it easier to connect, follow a conversation and access resources.

The new look and feel will be rolled out in multiple phases starting with these initial improvements in the conversations and replies levels.

Learn more about the new design today.

AARP Members Only Games

Play members only games, like FIll Ins, Lumeno, 2048 and a collaborative, multiplayer Let's Crossword.

Play Now
AARP Members Only Games Logos
AARP Rewards

Solve Crosswords. Earn Rewards. Activate AARP Rewards to earn points for games, quizzes and videos. Redeem for deals and discounts.

Get started with AARP Rewards now!
/html/assets/Rewards-program-badge-355x224.png