Automatic Determinations

The tables below provide Social Security program amounts that are automatically adjusted each year according to formulas in the Social Security Act. Column headings link to more detail.

Social Security program amounts determined under automatic adjustment provisions, 2009-2019
Year COLA
(percent)
Average
wage index
Contribution and
benefit base
Retirement earnings test
annual exempt amounts
Lower amount Higher amount
2009 0.0 40,711.61 $106,800 $14,160$37,680
2010 0.0 41,673.83 106,800 14,16037,680
2011 3.6 42,979.61 106,800 14,16037,680
2012 1.7 44,321.67 110,100 14,64038,880
2013 1.5 44,888.16 113,700 15,12040,080
2014 1.7 46,481.52 117,000 15,48041,400
2015 0.0 48,098.63 118,500 15,72041,880
2016 0.3 48,642.15 118,500 15,72041,880
2017 2.0 50,321.89 127,200 16,92044,880
2018 2.8 128,400 17,04045,360
2019 132,900 17,64046,920

Year Dollar amounts in PIA formula Dollar amounts in maximum family benefit formula
First Second First Second Third
2009 $744 $4,483 $950 $1,372 $1,789
2010 761 4,586 972 1,403 1,830
2011 749 4,517 957 1,382 1,803
2012 767 4,624 980 1,415 1,845
2013 791 4,768 1,011 1,459 1,903
2014 816 4,917 1,042 1,505 1,962
2015 826 4,980 1,056 1,524 1,987
2016 856 5,157 1,093 1,578 2,058
2017 885 5,336 1,131 1,633 2,130
2018 895 5,397 1,144 1,651 2,154
2019 926 5,583 1,184 1,708 2,228

Year "Old-law" contribution and benefit base Earnings needed for a quarter of coverage (or "credit") Monthly substantial gainful activity amount for … Coverage thresholds for …
Blind Other
disabled
Domestic
employees
Election
workers
2009 $79,200 $1,090 $1,640 $980 $1,700 $1,500
2010 79,200 1,120 1,640 1,000 1,700 1,500
2011 79,200 1,120 1,640 1,000 1,700 1,500
2012 81,900 1,130 1,690 1,010 1,800 1,500
2013 84,300 1,160 1,740 1,040 1,800 1,600
2014 87,000 1,200 1,800 1,070 1,900 1,600
2015 88,200 1,220 1,820 1,090 1,900 1,600
2016 88,200 1,260 1,820 1,130 2,000 1,700
2017 94,500 1,300 1,950 1,170 2,000 1,800
2018 95,400 1,320 1,970 1,180 2,100 1,800
2019 98,700 1,360 2,040 1,220 2,100 1,800
    Notes:
  • Automatic cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for OASDI benefits are effective for December of the stated year, first payable in the following January. For SSI, the COLAs are also payable the following January. See table of SSI payment amounts for values back to 1975.
  • The contribution and benefit base is the maximum amount of earnings taxable and creditable for benefit computation purposes.
  • The retirement test does not apply to beneficiaries over the normal retirement age. The higher exempt amount applies only in the year the worker attains the normal retirement age, and then only for months in that year prior to the month of such attainment. The lower exempt amount applies in years prior to the year the beneficiary attains the normal retirement age.
  • The "old-law" contribution and benefit base is the base that would have been in effect in the absence of the 1977 amendments. It has special purposes under the Social Security program, the Railroad Retirement program, and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974.