Category Archives: Current Events

Social Security and Medicare Part B Increases for 2017

Social Security and Medicare Part B Increases for 2017

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will increase 0.3 percent in 2017.  The 0.3 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 60 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2017.  Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries began on December 30, 2016.  The Social Security Act (“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.  The Act provides for how the COLA is calculated.

In the new year, the standard Medicare Part B premium amount will be $134 (or higher depending on your income).  However, most people who get Social Security benefits will pay less than this amount.  This is because the Part B premium increased more than the cost-of-living increase for 2017 benefits.  If you pay your Part B premium from your monthly Social Security payment, your monthly premium can go no higher than the increase you receive to your monthly benefit.  Social Security will tell you the exact amount you will pay for Part B in 2017.

Most beneficiaries will not see a reduction in their 2016 monthly benefit amount because of the increase in the Medicare Part B premium.  This is because the Act contains a “hold harmless” provision that protects most beneficiaries. The amount of the benefit payable between 2016 and 2017 will stay the same even though the Medicare Part B premium increases.

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To learn more about Medicare Part B costs go to at the Medicare webpage.

New IRS rule regarding an IRA could save you $20,000

Rolling over an IRA is a financial maneuver fraught with peril. One wrong step and you could be on the hook for a massive tax bill. Miss the 60-day deadline, and you could face a complicated appeals process that could easily cost $20,000 — that is, until now. On Aug. 24 the IRS changed its appeals process forContinue Reading

Chilifest Cancelled

Due to the threat of storms and power outages, the Bothell Chamber of Commerce cancelled Chilifest.

To tap federal tax benefits of CCRCs, see your CPA

The following is a recent Chicago Tribune article discussing the various tax implications of moving to a Continuing Care Retirement Community.  As with all tax matters the issues are somewhat tricky so instead of attempting to summarize the information, we have set forth the article in full. Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) are increasingly popularContinue Reading

The Benefits of House Sharing as a Senior

A recent study examined a new trend; among seniors who rent out a portion of their home.  House sharing is an economical option for seniors who lack sufficient retirement funds, or for those wanting to stay in their homes as long as possible.  The study notes that more than half of all working age householdsContinue Reading