NEWS / Legal News - December 2022

Social Security Cost of Living Adjustment

December marks the time of year when claims' examiners review the annual cost of living increases to social security benefits and adjust permanent total disability benefits.

The COLA adjustment for 2023 is 8.7%. This is a breathtakingly high COLA adjustment considering that, for years, the COLA adjustments were almost always below 3%.

To illustrate the impact this increase will have, consider the following: if an employee currently receives PTD and has a compensation rate of $995.00 and a SSDI benefit of $515.00 per week, his or her weekly benefit is $480.00. With the 8.7% social security COLA as of December 1, 2022, that same employee’s SSDI benefit increases to $559.81, reducing the employer and insurer's net payment to $435.19 - a weekly savings of almost $45.00.

The COLA increase is also significant considering that annual increases to the PTD rate for recent dates of injury are limited to 3%.

An updated handout with commonly used workers' compensation rates can be downloaded by clicking here.