Reasons Your SS Check May Have Decreased
If you were surprised by a decrease in your monthly Social Security check this year, you may be wondering what changed.
Though the Social Security Administration increased the amount many receive this year to account for inflation, some people are seeing a decrease in the amount they receive.
1. You Exceeded the Income Limit
One of the reasons this may be the case is if you had started receiving Social Security benefits before you had reached the full retirement age of 66/67. If you were still working, your income may have put limitations on the amount you can receive.
The Social Security Administration will withhold an amount from your SS check each month to account for the amount you went over the limit in income last year. 2021’s limit was $18,960. The SSA withholds benefits based on the amount you made over that limit.
They will withhold the first check you would have expected to receive in January and then give it to you with half the amount you earned over the limit deducted. When you didn’t see a check in January, and then received a reduced amount in February, that is likely what happened.
2. You Changed Your Medicare Plan
Another possible scenario is that you changed your Medicare coverage. A change in your coverage could mean more is deducted from the Social Security check you receive.
3. You Had Too Much Taxable Income 2 Years Ago
If you had too much taxable income two years ago (2020), a Medicare premium surcharge may be added to your current Medicare premium. The Medicare premium deducted from your Social Security income would therefore be more, and the amount you receive would be less.
This increase in taxable income could come from property or stock you sold, or if you recently retired. If you retired, however, you can file an appeal. We can help you do that!
If you did not have a similar increase in taxable income last year, you can expect your Medicare premium to return to what it was next year.
4. You Received Income that Wasn’t Taxed for Social Security
If you began receiving income from the government or another organization that was not taxed for Social Security, it could have affected your Social Security benefits. This income could have come from a Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), which can reduce your benefits by up to 50%, or a Government Pension Offset (GPO).
5. You Opted to Withhold More Tax Last Year
If you changed how much tax is withheld on your Social Security benefits, you may be seeing a smaller check. No matter when you made this change last year, you wouldn’t have seen it applied until the beginning of this year.
Ask Us for Help
If you still don’t understand why the amount on your Social Security check changed, we would love to help you get to the bottom of this!
Contact Lowery Law Group at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (843) 991-0733. There is no fee for a free consultation regarding your claim. Lowery Law Group is experienced in handling cases in South Carolina as well as Georgia.