Hot dog! We finally have a Social Security Cost of Living Adjustment increase! Social Security announced that beneficiaries should receive a whopping 2% increase for 2018. If you are receiving $1,500/mo, that equates to a $30 monthly increase. But hold the phone…will you REALLY see that entire increase in your check? Don’t spend all that money yet!
Many Social Security beneficiaries may not receive their raise!
About 70% of people who are receiving both Medicare and Social Security, have been protected from rising Medicare Part B increases by something called the “hold harmless” clause. Basically, the ‘hold harmless’ clause ensures that existing Medicare members don’t see their Part B premiums increase more than their Social Security COLA raise. Therefore, Social Security’s 2017 raise of 0.3%, kept Part B premiums from rising by more than 0.3% in 2017 for this group of beneficiaries.
2018 Part B premiums haven’t been announced yet but aren’t expected to increase much higher than 2017. Those who’ve been protected by ‘hold harmless’ could see some, or all, of their raise gobbled up by Medicare Part B in order to “catch them up” for the lower premiums they’ve paid in recent years.