2024 Social Security benefits: When to expect increases in monthly checks

Recipients of Social Security are just weeks away from receiving an increase in their monthly benefits. 

The Social Security Administration announced in October that millions of Americans will get a 3.2% boost in 2024. 

The Social Security program pays roughly $1.4 trillion in benefits to more than 71 million people each year, including low-income individuals with disabilities. 

Taxes fund Social Security. The government uses taxes from working people to pay benefits to people who have already retired, people who are disabled, the survivors of workers who have died, and dependents of beneficiaries. 

While the money is used to pay people who are currently receiving benefits, any unused money goes to the Social Security trust fund. Some of the money in the trust, together with the Social Security contributions of people in the workforce, pay for future benefits. 


FILE - In this photo illustration, a Social Security card sits alongside checks from the U.S. Treasury on Oct. 14, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

To determine what amount of Social Security you’ll receive, the government calculates a percentage of your highest wages from your top 35 years of earning, factoring in when you choose to start receiving benefits. 

Annual changes in Social Security benefits are calculated based on the consumer price index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers, or the CPI-W, from July, August and September. 

The most recent cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, means the average recipient will receive more than $50 more every month beginning in January, the administration said. 

The announcement followed this year’s 8.7% benefit increase, brought on by record 40-year-high inflation, which pushed up the price of consumer goods. 

Here is when beneficiaries can expect to see an increase in their monthly checks. 

Dec. 29, 2023: People who receive Supplemental Security Incomes (SSI) will see an increase in their checks. 

Jan. 3, 2024: People who began claiming Social Security benefits before May 1997 should see an increase in their checks. 

Jan. 10, 2024: People whose birthdays fall on the 1st-10th of their birth month. 

Jan. 17, 2024: People whose birthdays fall on the 11th-20th of their birth month. 

Jan. 24, 2024: People whose birthdays fall on the 21st-31st of their birth month. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.