Legislative Update 2
"Even though Medicare premiums and out-of-pocket drug costs are the fastest growing and biggest financial challenge in retirement, that growth is not accounted for in the annual COLA," Johnson says. The consumer price index used to calculate the COLA for retirees reflects the spending pattern of young urban workers, and explicitly excludes people over the age 6But younger workers don't get Medicare, and spend a much lower portion of their incomes on healthcare. .With it looking increasingly likely that Social Security beneficiaries will receive the highest COLA in seven years —about 3.3% in 2019 — proponents of "chaining" the COLA are likely to try to argue that the COLA under current law overpays recipients. Proponents of using the chained consumer price index to calculate the COLA claim that the chained consumer price index (CPI) is more "accurate" in calculating the COLA because it takes into account how people substitute other items when prices change. .Over the past 25 years, Congress has periodically debated plans to fix Social Security's financing, that rely heavily on benefit cuts. But for the first time in 2019 and 2020, Congress is considering a plan to strengthen Social Security and its benefits while making the program solvent by beefing up the payroll tax revenues flowing into the program. … Continued
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Zero premiums are also likely to end very soon. If Congress should cut reimbursements to plans as has happened in the past, some plans may respond by no longer offering coverage at all. Should Paula enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan and her plan ceases to offer coverage in the future, Paula could have problems finding something comparable that she could afford. .TSCL agrees with members of the subcommittee and we share their concerns about fraud within the DI program. We feel strongly that the federal government must administer the necessary oversight to ensure that scarce program dollars are being spent properly. In the months ahead, we will continue to advocate on Capitol Hill for fraud prevention and for the administrative funding needed to make meaningful progress. .Cut back spending. Given that housing represents more than one-third of their expenses, older Americans might look for ways to free up the equity in their homes by downsizing or taking out a reverse mortgage, or find ways to cut their costs by exploring options such as home-sharing. … Continued
TSCL originally made this proposal with the massive support of our members. It is designed to provide fair compensation for the lower benefits Notch Victims receive. It has now been introduced as Bills in Congress. If passed, it will provide a Settlement payment of ,000 to each living Notch Victim or their beneficiary spouse. .According to the IRS, advance payments of the Child Tax Credit will be made from July through December to eligible taxpayers and will be up to 50% of the credit. Advance payments will be estimated from your 2020 tax returns, or 2019 returns if the 2020 returns are not filed and processed yet. .Read all notices from the Social Security Administration and carefully check the deposit information. If it doesn't agree with your bank account, contact Social Security at once. .Eight new Members of Congress signed on to the Social Security Fairness Act (H.R. 1332) this week, bringing the cosponsor total up to 11If signed into law, the Social Security Fairness Act would repeal the government pension offset (GPO) and the windfall elimination provision (WEP) of the Social Security Act. .The new scams were quick to arise, and deft in their effectiveness. For example, in March of last year, the Social Security Administration posted an alert about a scam claiming that economic impact stimulus payments may be suspended or decreased due to office closures related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was a lie. .I don't have dental insurance and pay out of pocket. I know I will need to get some expensive work done at some point in the next year or two. Is dental insurance worth the cost? How do you go about getting a good dental plan? ."There is no substitute for boots on the ground — for going into a facility to assess whether a facility is abiding by long-standing infection control practices," Verma told reporters this month. .Most Committee Members seemed to agree with him but as the hearing went on, it became clear just how difficult the task will become under strict time constraints and in a politically-charged environment. Most Members shifted their focus toward reforming the corporate code, since it will likely be more politically feasible. Co-chair Jeb Hensarling (TX) stated, "Fundamental tax reform, even if limited to American businesses, can result in both revenues for economic growth and jobs for the American people." By lowering the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent and by eliminating loopholes, Hensarling said that 2.1 million jobs would be created over ten years. .Trump's administration "has decided to pursue a radical and dangerous policy to set prices based on rates paid in countries that he has labeled as socialist, which will harm patients today and into the future," Stephen Ubl, the head of PhRMA, said in a statement.