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Disabled and retired vets to see largest cost of living raise in six years

Social Security Administration offices. (Dwight Burdette/Wikimedia Commons)
October 15, 2018

Beginning in January 2019, military retirees and disabled vets will get an increase in their checks, seeing a 2.8-percent raise – the largest in six years.

Those receiving the largest checks stand to see a $369 per month increase, reported. An E-7 with 20 years of service would see an increase of about $67 monthly and an O-5 with 20 years of service would see an additional $126 monthly.

The Social Security Administration made the announcement on Thursday after President Trump approved the Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) measure last Tuesday.

The typical VA disability check will go up from $4 to $83 depending on ratings. Those who receive Social Security checks will see an average of $39 extra each month. Civil Service retirees will also receive a 2.8 percent increase each month.

The Consumer Price Index determines if and what the COLA will be, based on the numbers from the previous year, Military Times reported. In 2017, the COLA increase was 2.0 percent.

The COLA affects about one in every five Americans, including Social Security recipients, disabled veterans, federal retirees, and retired military members. COLA increases are standard with Social Security benefits and military retiree pay, so no actions are required on the part of Congress.

Annual authorization is required for most other federal benefits, although veteran advocates have been trying to get the COLA raises to be automatic, with no success thus far.

Earlier this week, House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Phil Roe commended the White House and his contemporaries for making sure that vets got the pay increase.

He said, “So many veterans rely on disability compensation payments to make ends meet, and this cost-of-living adjustment means that they will be able to continue to do so.”

Over 67 million Americans are affected by cost-of-living increases, according to the Social Security Administration.