WASHINGTON 10/19/2011 -- After two years without an increase in benefits, 55 million Social Security recipients are finally getting a raise next year.
Experts project the increase will be about 3.5 percent. The Social Security Administration is scheduled to make it official Wednesday when the government releases an inflation measure that determines the annual cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA.
There was no COLA in 2010 or 2011 because inflation was too low. Those were the first two years without a COLA since automatic increases were adopted in 1975.
Monthly Social Security payments average $1,082, or about $13,000 a year. A 3.5 percent increase would amount to an additional $38 a month, or about $455 a year.