Social Security

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Social Security COLA Is Announced: 1.3%

Increase is slightly lower than last year's, averaging $20 a month

(Newser) - Social Security recipients will get a modest 1.3% cost-of-living increase in 2021, but that might be small comfort in the face of worries about the coronavirus and its consequences for older people. The average increase for retired workers will be $20 a month, according to estimates released Tuesday by...

Woman's Grandmother Is Found Frozen at Home

Cynthia Black is accused of keeping her Grandma's body frozen for 12 years

(Newser) - Sorry, Grandma's dead and frozen in the basement—but she can still collect Social Security checks. That's pretty much the scheme a Pennsylvania woman is accused of perpetrating in order to rake in tens of thousands of dollars from the feds, Local 21 News reports. "It's...

Dead People Are Getting Stimulus Payments

Relatives of the deceased are asking: Will the government want it back?

(Newser) - The dead may tell no tales, but they do get stimulus checks—and media reports are cropping up about relatives wondering what to do with the windfall. "Obviously, she does not need stimulus right now," Jeanne Siracuse tells NBC News about her mother, who received $1,200 despite...

Treasury Does 180 on Stimulus Funds for One Set of Americans

Social Security recipients won't have to file tax return to get money

(Newser) - One of the biggest challenges the Treasury Department has in getting Americans their checks from the $2.2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package is tracking down people who don't file tax returns. Now, at least one key group of nonfilers will see that process expedited. The official word, delivered from...

Look Out: Here Comes Trump's New Budget Plan

The AP says it relies on 'rosy' projections

(Newser) - Confronted with trillion-dollar-plus deficits for as far as the eye can see, President Trump is offering a budget plan that rehashes previously rejected spending cuts while leaving Social Security and Medicare benefits untouched. Trump’s fiscal 2021 budget plan, expected to be released Monday, isn’t likely to generate a...

Trump Suggests He's Open to Entitlement Cuts

'At some point' they will be on his plate, he says in CNBC interview

(Newser) - Entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare could potentially get cut under President Trump, or so he suggested at the very end of a CNBC interview from Davos on Wednesday. In what the Washington Post describes as a "new openness" to the idea—he pledged to protect entitlements...

Warren's Social Security Plan Calls for a Raise

She wants people to get $200 more a month, and she wants the rich to pay for it

(Newser) - Elizabeth Warren is out with her latest policy proposal, and she's calling for those on Social Security to receive an extra $200 a month. In a post at Medium detailing the proposal, Warren says the increased benefits would be paid for by raising taxes on the wealthy. The plan...

Social Security Recipients Get Largest Raise in Years

But it will amount to just about $39 a month

(Newser) - Tens of millions of Social Security recipients and other retirees will get a 2.8% boost in benefits next year as inflation edges higher, the AP reports. It's the biggest increase most retired baby boomers have gotten. Following a stretch of low inflation, the cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, for...

Clue in Mail Bomb Sent to Obama: Cat Hair Under Label

Another clue: 'obliterated' eBay shipping label on package sent to Gov. Greg Abbott

(Newser) - A 46-year-old Texas woman faces a host of charges after she allegedly mailed explosives to then-President Barack Obama, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, and former Social Security Administration Commissioner Carolyn Colvin. Julia Poff of Sealy had been repeatedly denied Social Security benefits and was also upset with the handling of a...

Social Security Recipients Get Largest Raise in Years

Though it'll only amount to $25 a month

(Newser) - Millions of Social Security recipients and other retirees will get a 2% increase in benefits next year. It's the largest increase since 2012 but comes to only $25 a month for the average beneficiary. The Social Security Administration announced the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) Friday. The COLA affects benefits for...

Social Security Recipients May Get Biggest Raise in Years

It's expected to only be about 2.2% (or $28 a month, on average), but still

(Newser) - Millions of Americans who rely on Social Security can expect to see their biggest pay increase in years in January, per projections released Thursday by the program's trustees, the AP reports. The increase is projected to be just 2.2%, or about $28 a month for the average recipient....

$600M Scam Lawyer Claims He's Fled US

Eric Conn claims he used a fake passport to flee the country

(Newser) - A fugitive Kentucky lawyer at the center of a nearly $600 million Social Security fraud case has fled the country using a fake passport and has gotten help from someone overseas with a job to help support himself, reports the AP . In an email exchange with The Lexington Herald-Leader over...

Wanted Lawyer Emailed Us Surrender Terms, Says Paper

Eric Conn, guilty in Social Security fraud, is on the lam

(Newser) - Someone claiming to be a fugitive Kentucky lawyer at the center of a nearly $600 million Social Security fraud case has contacted a newspaper to spell out proposed terms of his surrender. Disability lawyer Eric C. Conn, who disappeared a month before his sentencing, faces an outstanding FBI warrant for...

Tougher 'Able-Bodied' Work Rules Expected for Benefits

Trump budget calls for cuts in food stamps, Medicaid

(Newser) - President Trump unveils his first detailed budget plan on Tuesday, and word leaking out in advance suggests he wants big cuts for Medicaid and food stamps. The Washington Post reports that Trump's budget slashes Medicaid by $800 billion over 10 years, meaning he's on board with the House...

Man Willing to Lose Job Over 17-Minute Diversity Video

David Hall has refused the Social Security Administration's directive for months

(Newser) - David Hall would rather lose a job he's held for 14 years than watch a 17-minute video. The 42-year-old Social Security Administration employee is making headlines over his months-long refusal to watch a training video about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender diversity as part of an initiative "in...

Homeless Woman, 80, Finally Gets $100K Owed to Her by US

Wander Witter tried to prove her case for years

(Newser) - For years Wanda Witter, an 80-year-old retired machinist wandered the streets of Washington, DC, with three suitcases crammed full of Social Security paperwork that she insisted proved the government owed her a lot of money. People called her crazy and a hoarder, especially because she slept in shelters or on...

Army Making Rare Change to Its Iconic Dog Tags

It's the first alteration to the tags in 40 years

(Newser) - For soldiers, a dog tag "individualizes the human being who wears it, despite his or her role as a small part of a huge and faceless organization," CNN quotes the Library of Congress as saying. But few citizens probably realize the danger dogs tags can put soldiers in....

If You Get Social Security, Bad News, Again

There's no benefit increase for 2016

(Newser) - The government says there will be no benefit increase next year for millions of Social Security recipients, disabled veterans, and federal retirees. It's just the third time in 40 years that payments will remain flat, with all three times occurring since 2010. And there's more bad news: The...

11M People Could Have a Social Security Problem Next Year

Unless Congress acts, disability benefits will be cut 19%

(Newser) - Our annual report on the state of Social Security and Medicare was issued yesterday, and from a 30,000-foot view, the AP sees Social Security's financial health as having grown no worse in the past year. In fact, the program's retirement trust fund is projected to be able...

New Obama Gun-Control Plan Surprises NRA

Policy could put 4.7M more Americans in background-check system

(Newser) - A new plan to issue background checks on millions of potential gun-buyers has caught the NRA off guard, the Los Angeles Times reports. Responding to an executive order from President Obama, the Social Security Administration is devising a policy that could add millions of its beneficiaries to the National Instant...

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