Overview of Disability

Disability Back Pay

Disability Requirements

Disability Applications

Disability Advice Tips

How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

SSD Mistakes to avoid

Disability for Mental

What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

Disability through SSA

SSI Disability Benefits

Disability for Children

How do I qualify for it?

Working and Disability

Disability Award Notice

Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

Disability Eligibility

SSD SSI Definitions

Recent Questions

SSDRC Disability Blog

Do You Get Cost Of Living Increases If You Receive Social Security Disability Or SSI?

If Social Security gives a cost of living increase for a given year, then all Social Security, disability, survivor, retirement, and SSI disability beneficiaries will receive it.

Cost of living increases (COLAS) begin in December of each year for Social Security beneficiaries, and on December 30 for SSI beneficiaries, so that all beneficiaries have an increase in the benefits they receive in January of the year the cost of living increase is given.

When the Social Security program began in 1935, it was thought that an individual would receive the same benefits for a lifetime. Congress first legislated annual cost of living increases in 1950, however these were not automatic. Congress had to create special legislation for each year there was a Social Security cost of living increase. It was not until 1972 that Congress enacted the COLA provision that allowed automatic annual cost of living increases.

The function of a COLA is to make sure that the purchasing power of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security benefits is not eroded by inflation. Social Security bases the amount of the COLA on a percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers) from the third quarter of the year of the last COLA to the third quarter of the current year. If there is no increase in the Consumer Price Index, there can be no COLA.

In 2009 and 2010 there were no COLA increases because Consumer Price Index for inflation had not increased to an amount larger than the third quarter of 2008. These were the first years that there was no COLA increase since 1975.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

If I Move To A State Where There Is A Lower Cost Of Living
Can I Receive More Social Security Disability If I Get Another Condition Or Illness?
How much does Social Security pay in disability benefits?
Social Security Disability - Permanent Disability
Can I qualify for SSI benefits due to having angina?

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria