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Changes in Social Security for 2021

If you receive Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, you should be aware of updates to related laws. For example, each year the Social Security Administration issues a Cost of Living Adjustment that impacts your payment amount.

Review the key changes that took effect in January 2021 and the possible changes to expect with the new presidential administration.

January 2021 changes

This year, the COLA for Social Security recipients is 1.3%. The SSA determines this amount based on the year’s projected economic activity and other factors.

Your lifetime earnings influence the monthly amount of SSDI benefits you receive. For 2021, the average disability recipient will receive about $1,277 per month, representing $16 more than the 2020 average benefit amount.

If you receive SSDI and work, you can now earn up to $1,310 per month while continuing to qualify for benefits. The earnings limit for blind SSDI recipients is $2,190 per month.

If you qualify for a trial work program, you can earn up to $940 a month without affecting your benefits. The limit in 2020 was $910.

Potential Social Security reform

Changes made by the previous administration will result in reduced disability in 2022. However, President Biden has expressed an intention to prevent this impact before it occurs. Many lawmakers advocate for increasing benefits for low-income recipients while increasing taxes for high earners.

The proposed Social Security reform program must receive bipartisan legislative support to result in true changes for SSDI recipients. However, reform remains on the public consciousness and could result in legal updates in the coming years.