Update February 20 2021
According to the National Council on Aging, 34% of older households hold credit card balances, and another 29% still owe money on a mortgage, home equity line of credit, or both. Digging out requires work and making changes. Reducing debt requires increasing income, restructuring your budget, and other changes. Here are some things to consider: .The Guaranteed 3% COLA Act — Like the CPI-E Act, this critical bill would base Social Security COLAs on an inflation index for seniors. However, it would also provide much-needed financial relief to older Americans by ensuring that beneficiaries never receive an annual benefit increase that is less than 3%. TSCL was disappointed that this essential bill did not gain the support it needed to win passage in the 115th Congress, but TSCL is working to get Members of Congress onboard and the legislation moving in 2019. .When a zero COLA was announced for 2016, the Medicare Trustees projected that the Part B premium and deductible amounts would increase by an unprecedented 52 percent between 2015 and 2016 — from 4.90 to 9.30 per month. Passage of The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, however resulted in reducing the increase in Part B premiums from 9.30 per month to 1.80 per month, which was still an extremely high 16.1 percent increase. The premium included a repayment amount that was added to monthly premiums of all beneficiaries in future years to recover over time the cost of the reduced premium rate in 2016. … Continued
White House Action Immigration Comes Hidden Long Term Costs Social Security Warns Senior Citizen League
Will Medicare Soon Include Dental Coverage and More? .One new cosponsor – Rep. Denny Heck (WA-10) – signed on to Rep. Allyson Schwartz's (PA-13) Medicare Physician Payment Innovation Act (H.R. 574) this week, bringing the total up to thirty-three. The bill, if signed into law, would repeal and replace the faulty formula that is currently used to determine reimbursements for physicians who treat Medicare patients. .On Wednesday, the Senate Finance Committee held a confirmation hearing for Sylvia Mathews Burwell, President Obama's nominee for the position of HHS Secretary. Burwell was nominated back in April, shortly after Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that she would be stepping down. If confirmed, she will oversee the Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security programs, and she will also manage the continued implementation of the Affordable Care Act. … Continued
Provide a one-time bump – up in monthly benefits for all beneficiaries. A higher level of monthly benefits would mean more adequate COLAs and a greater ability to afford Medicare Part B premium increases in coming years. .When you start retirement benefits before your full retirement age– which for you is 66 — you may work, but Social Security will withhold one dollar in benefits for every in earnings above the limit. The question for many people who go this route is when the withholding starts. .We reported last week that President Trump has dropped his demand for a payroll tax cut in any new pandemic-related stimulus bill, which TSCL successfully lobbied against, along with many other groups. However, other issues have caused great difficulty in negotiations for a new bill, one of which has not received much attention in the main press. .Sources: "Cost, Logistics Of Obama Immigration Plan Raise Concerns Before Launch," Doug McKelway, Fox News, February 13, 201Testimony of Eileen O'Connor, Esq., Before The Senate Committee On Homeland Security And Government Affairs, February 4, 201"How Changes In Immigration Policy Might Affect The Federal Budget," The Congressional Budget Office, January 2015. .Would the money spent on life insurance premiums be better invested in an annuity or other investment? Some types of life insurance can be cost prohibitive. Your best investment is to get unbiased advice from a fee-only certified financial professional who does not get a commission from selling life insurance policies, before dumping your life insurance, or taking out any new policies. .The new study found that consumer price data through March 2021 indicate that Social Security benefits have (once again) lost 30 percent of their buying power since 2000, and the loss of buying power looks as though it might grow deeper in 2021, should the current inflationary trends continue. The Senior Citizens League has been conducting this study for 12 years. The study typically looks at data from the 1month period of January of the previous year to January of the current year. But with recent aggressive inflation, TSCL felt it critical to include this data in our 2021 study findings. Doing so helps TSCL and the public to learn how this abrupt rise of inflation affects the buying power of Social Security benefits today. .In addition, since 1992 there has been a significant change to the government's bottom line. For the government fiscal year ending September 30, 2000, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported a surplus of 6 billion- billion of which comes from non Social Security revenues. The CBO estimates the 10-year non-Social Security surplus to be about .1 trillion. .On its website the BLS explains that it calculates the COLA this way: .If signed into law, H.R. 1811 would base Social Security cost-of-living adjustments on the Consumer Price Index for Elderly Consumers (CPI-E) and gradually phase out the cap on income subject to the payroll tax.