January 27, 2023 12:30 EST

Veterans are our only business.

Legislative Updates

Social Security Announces 8.7% Benefit Increase for 2023

Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for approximately 70 million Americans will increase 8.7 percent in 2023, the Social Security Administration announced today. On average, Social Security benefits will increase by more than $140 per month starting in January.

The 8.7 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 65 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2023.  Increased payments to more than 7 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on December 30, 2022. (Note: some people receive both Social Security and SS

I benefits). The Social Security Act ties the annual COLA to the increase in the Consumer Price Index as determined by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“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. 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,” Acting Commissioner Kilolo Kijakazi said.

View a COLA message from Acting Commissioner Kijakazi »

Some other adjustments that take effect in January of each year are based on the increase in average wages.  Based on that increase, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $160,200 from $147,000.

Social Security and SSI beneficiaries are normally notified by mail starting in early December about their new benefit amount. The fastest way to find out their new benefit amount is to access their personal my Social Security account to view the COLA notice online. It’s secure, easy, and people find out before the mail arrives. People can also opt to receive a text or email alert when there is a new message from Social Security–such as their COLA notice–waiting for them, rather than receiving a letter in the mail. People may create or access their my Social Security account online at www.ssa.gov/myaccount.

Information about Medicare changes for 2023 is available at www.medicare.gov. For Social Security beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare, their new higher 2023 benefit amount will be available in December through the mailed COLA notice and my Social Security’s Message Center.

The Social Security Act provides for how the COLA is calculated. To read more, please visit www.ssa.gov/cola.

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Delaware Attorney General

Restitution for service members/veterans who were deceived and defrauded by Harris Jewelry

FROM THE DELAWARE DOJ:

PLEASE READ… the below-linked press release regarding a multi-state resolution against Harris Jewelry. Harris defrauded thousands of servicemembers and veterans affecting every U.S. State and Territory. This is a big win for our community, and we would like to get the word out to as many affected veterans and servicemembers as possible so that restitution can be provided appropriately.

The agreement requires Harris Jewelry to stop collecting $21,307,229 in outstanding debt that is held by 13,426 servicemembers and to provide $12,872,493 in refunds to 46,204 service members who paid for protection plans. Harris Jewelry is also required to vacate judgments against 112 consumers totaling $115,335.64 and delete any negative credit entries reported to consumer reporting agencies. Service members and veterans who entered into a predatory financing loan with Harris Jewelry between January 2014 and July 2022 will be eligible for restitution to the extent they paid for warranties, however, they will have to claim their restitution.

*Harris Jewelry, which is now closed, is not affiliated with the local Delaware retail business Harris Jewelers.

https://news.delaware.gov/2022/07/20/ag-jennings-announces-34-2-million-national-settlement-with-harris-jewelry/

FOR QUESTIONS:

Diana M. Anderson, Paralegal II
Fraud & Consumer Protection Division
State of Delaware Department of Justice
820 N. French Street, 5th Floor
Wilmington, Delaware 19801
Direct Line: (302) 683-8862
Fax: 302-577-6499
Email: diana.anderson@delaware.gov

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