How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Stephanie O Joy, Esq Your Own Question
Stephanie O Joy, Esq
Stephanie O Joy, Esq, Soc. Sec. Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 13543
Experience:  22+ years legal exp. - 12+ years owning/operating her own SSD Law practice.
10805288
Type Your Social Security Question Here...
Stephanie O Joy, Esq is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Why am I getting less per month in 2017 than I received in

Customer Question

why am I getting less per month in 2017 than I received in 2016?
JA: The Retirement Accountant will know how to help. Please tell me more, so we can help you best.
Customer: what do you need to know?
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Retirement Accountant should know?
Customer: I read somewhere that by law you could not receive less per month than you received per month the previous year. Is this true? I have been notified that I will receive $10.20 less per month in 2017
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 6 months ago.

Hi, my name is***** have been practicing SS LAW full time for 10+ years and look forward to assisting you.

Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 6 months ago.

Do you have a supplement plan to your Medicare Part B?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
My prescription drug plan increased 10.20. My question is whether there is a law stipulating that you cannot receive less than the previous year?
Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 6 months ago.

No, there is no law on what you can receive; but you are likely thinking of the Part B basic premium protection, in terms of what you can gross, less your Medicare Part B (for most of us). For most of us, the increase to our basic part B (not our supp or other insurances) can not be more than our COLA, so that it can't cause our net to go down. Other things, however, can cause our net to go down. That is why I asked about your other insurance plan - if that goes up and you have it deducted, or any other deductions from our Gross SS benefit, whatever we end up spending it on, is out of our pocket, so to speak.

Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 6 months ago.

I hope this helps! My goal is to provide you with excellent and accurateservice – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions.

Kindly rate me "excellent" when you aredone. I look forward to assisting you in the future, should you have legal questions. Be sure to start future posts with "To ***** Esq., ONLY" if you want me to specifically answer it.

Sincerely, ***** ***** Joy, Esq.

Your online SS legal resource!

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I expected more background information. I can't get in touch with SS and was trying to learn about why I may continue to receive less and less down the road.
Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 6 months ago.

You are not receiving less, you are spending more on additional insurance that itself went up in price. If you cancel that extra Rx policy (not that I recommend that!) you will see. Medicare will not tell you "why" - because that is a legislative thing - Congress puts these rules in place.

So, to repeat, there is no law that says if you spend more on better insurance or to keep the same extra insurances you choose to buy, you won't pay for it, you won't find that. It doesn't exist.

Again, you are confusing the "hold harmless" law, the fact that they can't charge you for more of the Medicare B premium increase than than your COLA can absorb, so Part B increase can not be the cause of a lowering of SS. However, other expenses of yours, including Medicare Supplemental policies, can. There are other things that can as well - including child support, alimony, valid garnishments, etc. But NOT the Part B premium increase.

I would add that your question was: why am I getting less per month in 2017 than I received in 2016?

That has been answered: Because you are opting for a drug plan that increased in price by $10.20.

You indicate you would like more background. Here is your start:

https://www.medicareinteractive.org/get-answers/how-original-medicare-works/original-medicare-cost-overview/increases-in-part-b-premiums-the-hold-harmless-provision

Here is more: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/hold-harmless-rule-protects-social-security-from-medicare-premium-increases.html

Hope this helps? It can be worthwhile to shop around for drug plans, if you think yours is getting out of hand.