There was a 1.7 percent increase last year, but there will be no increase for 2016. The decision to not have a cost-of-living adjustment in 2016 had a lot to do with lower gas prices.
Knoxville, TN (PRWEB) February 11, 2016
Jason Baril, of the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod and Baril, PLLC, recently brought to light how there will not be any cost-of-living adjustments in 2016 for current disability beneficiaries and how this is affecting the elderly. “Every year, except for 2010 and 2011, there has been a cost-of-living adjustment for disability beneficiaries,” said attorney Jason Baril, owner/partner at Ogle, Elrod and Baril, PLLC. “There was a 1.7 percent increase last year, but there will be no increase for 2016.”
Baril writes in the January 6, 2016,blog that during 2015, disability beneficiaries received an average of $1,165 per month. This amount was higher than the previous year due to something called the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). Furthermore, there are approximately 65 million Americans that receive Social Security benefits, and the COLA determination can be extremely important for those individuals who live solely off their benefits.
“The decision to not have a cost-of-living adjustment in 2016 had a lot to do with lower gas prices,” said Baril. “Some elderly groups are saying the calculation is not fair to their demographic, pointing out that elderly individuals drive less than working individuals and spend less money on gas. The elderly tend to spend more money on healthcare.”
Politicians, however, are working on a law that would benefit the elderly when it comes to cost-of-living adjustments. In fact, a bill has been introduced that would amend the current law and require the use of the Consumer Price Index for Elderly (CPI-E), rather than the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W), when calculating the annual COLA for people who receive Social Security. The bill would guarantee that seniors receive a minimum 3-percent COLA increase every year, even if the CPI-E falls below that amount.
“Wait times for getting approved for disability benefits are at an all time high,” added Baril. “However, having an attorney help you will decrease your wait time and increase your chances of getting approved, as you could be denied immediately if you do not fill out the application correctly.”
About Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod and Baril, PLLC
Ogle, Elrod and Baril is known for personal injury, but also offers disability services. Attorneys at the firm have handled thousands of Social Security Disability Insurance(SSDI) cases, including all levels of appeals, helping many clients obtain much-needed compensation following a disability, injury or long-term physical ailment. For more information, please call 800-888-3192, or follow them on Facebook. The law office is located at 706 Walnut St., Suite 700, Knoxville, TN.
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