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Social Security Benefits to Increase

For the first time since 2009, recipients of monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will see an increase in their payment, the Social Security Administration announced Wednesday.

More than 60 million Americans will receive a 3.6 percent cost-of-living (COLA) increase in 2012, according to the announcement.

Eight million SSI beneficiaries will be the first to receive the new higher payment beginning Dec. 30 of this year, followed in by an increase to 55 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2012.

Also in January 2012, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $110,100 from $106,800. The Social Security Administration expects about 10 million wage earners will pay higher taxes as a result of the change. For some beneficiaries, their Social Security increase may be partially or completely offset by increases in Medicare premiums. For more information, go to www.socialsecurity.gov/cola.