The Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustment for 2023

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Are you ready to see an increase in your Social Security check?

In October 2022, the Social Security Administration (SSA) announced an 8.7% increase in monthly benefits for recipients of Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Here’s Your Social Security Cost-of-Living Raise for 2023

The SSA says the 8.7% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will take effect with benefits payable to Social Security beneficiaries in January 2023. Increased payments to SSI beneficiaries start at the end of December 2022.

“Medicare premiums are going down and Social Security benefits are going up in 2023, which will give seniors more peace of mind and breathing room,” Social Security Administration Acting Commissioner Kilolo Kijakazi said in a news release. “This year’s substantial Social Security cost-of-living adjustment is the first time in over a decade that Medicare premiums are not rising and shows that we can provide more support to older Americans who count on the benefits they have earned.”

The average monthly Social Security check in June 2022 was $1,669 for retirees, according to the SSA. That means the 8.7% increase translates to approximately an extra $145 in an average check each month. You can view your COLA notice online through your mySocialSecurity” account. (We have a guide to help you set up your “mySocialSecurity” account if you haven’t created one yet.)

The COLA is based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W), a broad measure of the price of food, energy, health care, housing, transportation and more.

In years when there is no inflation, there is no increase in benefits. However, benefits are never reduced if there’s no inflation.

Historical Cost-of-Living Adjustments From the Social Security Administration

YearAdjustment Percentage
20228.7%
20215.9%
20201.3%
20191.6%
20182.8%
20172.0%
20160.3%
20150.0%
20141.7%
20131.5%
20121.7%
20113.6%
20100.0%

You can see the full history of cost-of-living adjustments here.

The Best Time To Collect Social Security

If you haven’t started taking Social Security payments yet, you may be wondering when to begin. Money expert Clark Howard says the best time to collect Social Security is “to wait as long as you possibly can.”

But will you still get the benefits of COLA raises even if you wait to take Social Security? The SSA explains it this way:

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“You’re eligible for cost-of-living benefit increases starting with the year you become age 62. This is true even if you don’t get benefits until your full retirement age or even age 70. We add cost-of-living increases to your benefit beginning with the year you reach 62. Benefits are adjusted yearly to reflect the increase.”

If you have questions about Social Security or retirement, contact Clark’s free Consumer Action Center at 636-492-5275.

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