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Were social security checks in the USA, lowered this year ???


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18 replies to this topic

#1 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 22 2010 - 07:37 PM

Im asking because my father, received his social security check this month from the USA, and it was 300 dollars less than what it usually is !!!

At last my body is reunited with my soul which was always feminine.

#2 of 19 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted February 22 2010 - 08:43 PM

Yes SS payments, by law,  are based on the cost of living. The COL went down this year because of the recession.

Doug


"I'm in great shape, for the shape I'm in."
Bob Hope in The Ghostbreakers

#3 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 22 2010 - 08:49 PM

The col ??? Can you explain???

At last my body is reunited with my soul which was always feminine.

#4 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 22 2010 - 08:50 PM

Also, when the recession is over, does that mean it will go back up again ???

At last my body is reunited with my soul which was always feminine.

#5 of 19 OFFLINE   Edwin-S

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Posted February 23 2010 - 02:02 AM



Originally Posted by Tony Zannikos 

The col ??? Can you explain???
 
Cost of living.

"You bring a horse for me?" "Looks like......looks like we're shy of one horse." "No.......You brought two too many."

#6 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 23 2010 - 03:05 AM

Thanks !!!

At last my body is reunited with my soul which was always feminine.

#7 of 19 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted February 23 2010 - 05:26 AM


Quote:
Yes SS payments, by law,  are based on the cost of living. The COL went down this year because of the recession. 

This is incorrect.  SS payments, by law, CANNOT be reduced after an SS contributor starts collecting benefits.  It is true that SS payments are tied to the cost of living (as represented by the U.S. consumer price index) - but only in the form of automatic increases when the CPI goes up.  If the CPI goes DOWN, SS beneficiaries simply don't get an increase.  But their benefits are not reduced in proportion to the dip in the CPI.  Believe me, if that were happening you'd be hearing the screams where you are now. The mere fact that there won't be any COLA (cost-of-living allowance) increase for  2010 and 2011 due to deflation has already raised howls of protest.  An actual reduction in benefits would never be tolerated, even if it were legal, which it isn't.

Some SS recipients in 2010 may see a slight reduction in the net amount of their checks because the premiums for the Medicare drug benefit, which are normally paid by deduction from SS checks, is going up slightly.  But we're talking about a difference of $2 or $3, not $300.  And while the deduction has increased, reducing the net, that actual amount of the benefit has remained unchanged. 

You or your father definitely need to contact the Social Security Administration in Washington to find out what's going on. 

Regards,

Joe


#8 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 23 2010 - 05:50 AM

Thanks Joe, might you have their phone number??? I have a 1800 number, but it doesnt work here in greece.

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#9 of 19 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

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Posted February 23 2010 - 07:32 AM



Originally Posted by Tony Zannikos 

Thanks Joe, might you have their phone number??? I have a 1800 number, but it doesnt work here in greece.
From the Social Security Administration website:

FBU.Athens@ssa.gov


Found at the following link: http://www.socialsec...eign.htm#GREECE




#10 of 19 OFFLINE   Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted February 23 2010 - 09:55 AM

Thanks,I called the number.It was only a 1 time, only for this month  deduction according to the person, that the irs takes out from US citizens living overseas every 5 years or so.So everythings fine, and thanks for all your help guys !!!!!!

At last my body is reunited with my soul which was always feminine.

#11 of 19 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted February 23 2010 - 10:18 AM

Joe is right. I'm sorry I thought we were talking about not getting a cost of living increase. The payment shouldn't go down, it just won't go up this year. Of course this is only until SS goes bankrupt.

Doug

"I'm in great shape, for the shape I'm in."
Bob Hope in The Ghostbreakers

#12 of 19 OFFLINE   Stan

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Posted February 24 2010 - 03:45 PM

Joseph is correct.

Plain, basic Social Security, not counting any Medicare deductions you have taken out will never go down.

There may not be an increase, which is what I believe happens this year, but it will not go down.

The 2009 increase was pretty substantial, so hopefully that will carry people through the leaner, no increase years.
Stan

#13 of 19 OFFLINE   JonZ

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Posted March 20 2010 - 07:19 PM

"The mere fact that there won't be any COLA (cost-of-living allowance) increase for  2010 and 2011......."

Unless youre a member of Congress.


#14 of 19 OFFLINE   Adam Lenhardt

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Posted March 21 2010 - 04:56 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonZ 

Unless youre a member of Congress.

...Despite the Twenty-seventh Amendment. Frustrating.


#15 of 19 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 21 2010 - 01:53 PM

I think we need to be careful about tipping over into politics here.  As for the post about Congress - my comment was strictly about the COLA as it applies to Social Security payments.  Current members of Congress don't draw retirement payments of any kind.  Former members don't draw Social Security because they don't pay into SS.  They have a separate pension program.  And I don't think Congressional salaries are subject to COLAs, either.  They are raised periodically by law.  (Usually voted for at about 2 o'clock in the morning, IIRC.  )  So "unless you're a member of Congress" doesn't really apply to what I said about COLA.

Regards,

Joe


#16 of 19 OFFLINE   Adam Lenhardt

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Posted March 21 2010 - 03:30 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joseph DeMartino [url=/forum/thread/298394/were-social-security-checks-in-the-usa-lowered-this-year#post_3672931])  So "unless you're a member of Congress" doesn't really apply to what I said about COLA.

Actually salaries for members of Congress are subject to COLAs, specifically because of the Twenty-seventh Amendment, which states: "No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened." Needless to say, this didn't please the Congress when the Archivist of the United States ratified the Amendment over its objections. The way they got around it was by instituting COLAs shortly before ratification, which increase automatically unless Congress specifically votes to reject them. Unless there was a vote I'm not aware of, Congress received a cost of living adjustment of just under 3 percent for 2010.

#17 of 19 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 22 2010 - 04:00 AM


Quote:
Actually salaries for members of Congress are subject to COLAs 
Obviously I did not know that.  Thanks for the correction. 

I still think that to go from my statement - which referred specifically to the COLA for current social security recipients ("The mere fact that there won't be any COLA (cost-of-living allowance) increase for  2010 and 2011...") to "Unless you're a member of Congress" is a bit of a stretch.  Members of Congress aren't getting a social security payment COLA, either, because they aren't collecting social security.  And there are millions of other Americans working in private industry and in government who are getting COLAs because they have contracts that call for them.  It would make as much sense to say, "Unless you're a member of the United Railway Workers" or "Unless you work for COMPANY X" as "Unless you're a member of Congress."  It was always an apples and oranges comparison in the context of the discussion and injected just a hint of politics into a thread that a) didn't need it and b) had managed to avoid that despite social security's being a government program.  So I thought it worth mentioning.  Thanks again for the head's up on the backdoor COLA.  I'm shocked, shocked, I tell you. 

Regards,

Joe


#18 of 19 OFFLINE   Kevin Hewell

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Posted March 22 2010 - 11:39 AM

How can they know there won't be a COLA for 2011?


#19 of 19 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 23 2010 - 03:39 AM

1)  I believe that is for fiscal 2011, which begins this October. 

2)  The COLA adjustments are based on final consumer price index data which always takes takes several months to compile after the completion of a quarter.  And they're put into effect several months before the start of the next FY.  So the FY 2011 COLA results were probably based on 3rd quarter (calendar year) figures from 2009 and published in January. 

3)  It is also possible that they just pull these numbers out of their collective butt and hope nobody questions them on it. 

Regards,

Joe