According to the Social Security Administration, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) was created to assist disabled adults and children who have limited income and resources. SSI benefits are also available to those who are at least 65 years old and without disabilities, if they meet the financial limits.
It was recently announced that those who are receiving SSI benefits will soon benefit from a cost-of-living increase. It is not a large increase, but it should help somewhat.
The cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, is 1.7 percent effective on January 1, 2013. This means that the maximum federal benefit that an individual could receive for SSI will increase to $710 per month. The maximum federal benefit for a couple on SSI will go up to $1,066 per month.
Although 1.7 percent may seem like a small amount, when it is multiplied by the number of people who are disabled and receiving SSI payments, it can be a very large number. There were no COLA increases to SSI in 2010 or 2011.
Those who do not suffer from a disability may be surprised to learn how many people are disabled. According to the Center for Disease Prevention and Control, 54 million people have some sort of a disability and 35 million of them have a severe disability. Additionally, the chance of becoming disabled increases as we age, as the baby boomers are discovering. The chance of being disabled is about 75 percent for those who are 80 years old or older.
Supplemental Security Income can be critical for those who are disabled and this 1.7 percent increase will certainly help.
Source: Disability Scoop, "SSI Recipients To Get Raise," Michelle Diament, Oct. 16, 2012
- At our La Crosse law firm we represent individuals who wish to obtain Supplemental Security Income, or those who have been denied an SSI claim and wish to appeal.