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I received my "new benefit amount" statement and I did not…

Customer Question
I received my "new...

I received my "new benefit amount" statement and I did not get a 2% increase for 2018. Why is that?

Accountant's Assistant: These retirement benefits are supposed to help us but they can be so complicated! The Retirement Expert will help you get the most benefits propertly. Please tell me more, so we can help you best.

The amount that I receive from SS has been the same sine 2016. My husband will be receiving an increase for 2018 - my statement has no increase for 2018.

Accountant's Assistant: Is there anything else the Retirement Accountant should be aware of?

Not to my knowledge. I am a senior citizen, retired since 1999. I started receiving SS at age 62 and am now 77.

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Social Security
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Answered in 13 minutes by:
12/16/2017
Social Security Expert: emc011075, Tax Adviser replied 7 months ago
emc011075
emc011075, Tax Adviser
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 3,893
Experience: Tax adviser IRS licensed Enrolled Agent and tax instructor
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Hi. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to help you.

Last year Medicare premiums were increased to $134 but for most people COLA (benefits cost of living adjustment) did not increase enough to compensate for the Medicare increase. Because of hold harmless rule protection social security could not reduce your benefits because of higher Medicare premiums so in 2017 you paid reduced Medicare premium. The COLA adjustment for 2018 is 2%, much higher than last year but if your Medicare premium is less than $134, the adjustment will be offset by increased Medicare premium. Again, the Medicare premium increase cannot be more than your COLA increase because of the Hold Harmless rule protection.

Look at the last year Medicare premiums. Did the premium increased for 2018? Are your husband's benefits higher than yours? If yes, than it is possible that his Medicare premium was higher than yours last year and his Medicare premium increase was less than his 2% benefits increase.

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