The Social Security Administration will start sending out 2022 cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) notices by mail throughout December. But if you want to see your new benefit amount sooner, you can check your notice online by logging into your MySocialSecurity account.
The information will be available starting in early December, according to the Social Security Administration. You can find your COLA notice in the message center.
If your COLA isn’t available online yet, you can get an update as soon as it’s posted by enabling account notifications. Simply log into your My Social Security account, then select email or text notifications under message center preferences.
Roughly 70 million Americans will see a 5.9% bump in their monthly Social Security benefits and Supplemental Security Income payments next year.
It’s the largest cost-of-living adjustment in nearly 40 years.
How to Create a My Social Security Account
If you don’t already have an account, you can create one anytime. However, only beneficiaries who created an account prior to Nov. 17 will receive their 2022 COLA notice online.
It’s a good idea to create an online account for other reasons, too — especially if you receive Social Security or SSI benefits.
With a MySocialSecurity account you can also:
- Request a new Social Security card.
- Set up or change direct deposit.
- Get your Social Security tax form (SSA-1099).
- Print a benefit verification letter.
- Change your address.
To create an account, you’ll need to do the following:
- Verify your identity by entering personal information about yourself.
- Answer some security questions.
- Create a username and password.
- Confirm your email address or phone number by entering a one-time security code.
Whether you have an online account or not, you can expect to receive a paper notice in the mail in upcoming weeks.
How Much Money Will the Average Social Security Recipient Get in 2022?
The 2022 COLA increase is the biggest since 1982.
Here’s what that looks like for the average recipient:
- Retired workers will get an extra $92 a month on average, bringing the average monthly benefit to $1,657.
- Disabled workers will get an extra $76 a month on average, bringing the average monthly benefit to $1,358.
- The maximum Supplemental Security Income benefit for individuals will increase by $47 a month, bringing the maximum monthly benefit to $841.
Why Your 5.9% COLA Might Not Go Far
The Social Security COLA is tied to inflation.
The annual increase is meant to offset the rising cost of everyday essentials like food, housing and gas.
Yet Social Security COLAs have historically lagged behind inflation — including this year.
The Consumer Price Index, a government measure for the change in prices over time, hit 6.2% in October — so the 5.9% COLA already falls short.
Higher Medicare costs in 2022 will likely erode the new Social Security adjustment even further.
Most Medicare beneficiaries have their monthly Part B premium automatically deducted from their Social Security checks.
On Nov. 12, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced that Part B premiums are increasing by $21.60 a month in 2022 — the biggest one-year increase in Medicare history.
Medicare beneficiaries are also facing higher Part A and Part B deductibles next year.
Rachel Christian is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance and a senior writer for Codetic.