This Is the Average Social Security Benefit for 2022 With Added COLA

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Social Security is getting a big change this year — in fact, the largest one in almost four decades.

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A year of runaway inflation and surging prices in almost every major category — and specifically, those affecting seniors — have forced the Social Security Administration to increase the cost of living adjustment to 5.9% for 2022 payments.

The 2022 COLA increase is one of the largest in history. To put it into perspective, COLAs of years past have hovered around 1.5%. 

Inflation currently stands at just above 6% over the past 12 months, meaning the COLA for next year, although historically substantial, is barely enough to wipe away the effects of rampant inflation. 

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According to the SSA, the estimated average monthly benefits for all retired workers will be $1,657 beginning in January 2022. Prior to the COLA taking effect, the average is $1,565, meaning seniors will receive roughly $100 more each month and $1,200 over the year as part of the COLA increase.

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For retired couples both receiving benefits, the average payment will be $2,753. A widowed mother with two children will receive an average payment of $3,187, and a widow or widower alone will receive $1,553.

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Disabled workers and spouses with one or more children will receive an average benefit of $2,383, while all disabled workers will receive an average of $1,358.

These estimates by the SSA are based on the average payment. Your specific payment could be more or less depending on a variety of factors, like how many years you worked, your earnings and whether or not you were married and had dependents. To see a more accurate estimate of your personal benefits, log into the SSA website to create a mySocialSecurity account where you can see your personal estimates and statements. The estimates include the amount you are slated to receive at retirement based on ages 62, 65, and 70.

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About the Author

Georgina Tzanetos is a former financial advisor who studied post-industrial capitalist structures at New York University. She has eight years of experience with concentrations in asset management, portfolio management, private client banking, and investment research. Georgina has written for Investopedia and WallStreetMojo. 

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