Javascript is not enabled.

Javascript must be enabled to use this site. Please enable Javascript in your browser and try again.

Skip to content
Content starts here
Leaving Website

You are now leaving and going to a website that is not operated by AARP. A different privacy policy and terms of service will apply.

Chained CPI Change Could Hit Veterans' Benefits

Cost-of-living increases will have an impact on more than just Social Security

A proposed formula to calculate cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security and other federal benefits — called the "chained CPI" (C-CPI) — would save money for the government, some budget experts say. But it would also take a disproportionate toll on one group — disabled veterans.

Sign up to read stories of real people making a difference

spinner image Image Alt Attribute

AARP Membership— $12 for your first year when you sign up for Automatic Renewal

Get instant access to members-only products and hundreds of discounts, a free second membership, and a subscription to AARP the Magazine. Find out how much you could save in a year with a membership. Learn more.

Join Now

Call to Action

Tell Washington to leave Social Security and veterans' benefits out of any budget deal.

Call 866-584-3909 toll-free

AARP calculates that a 30-year-old veteran of the Iraq or Afghanistan war who has no children and is 100 percent disabled would likely lose about $100,000 in disability compensation by age 75 (calculated in today's dollars), compared with benefits under the current cost-of-living formula. Over a 10-year period, 23 million veterans would lose $17 billion in compensation and pension benefits, according to AARP calculations.

The C-CPI would also reduce benefits for current and future retirees, costing the average 65-year-old nonveteran retiree about $3,900 in Social Security benefits by age 75.

The Congressional Budget Office says the C-CPI would rise about 0.3 percentage points less each year than the current consumer price index measure. Proponents of C-CPI "grossly underestimate the impact of what may seem like little nicks over time," says AARP senior legislative representative Timothy Gearan.

Discover AARP Members Only Access

Join AARP to Continue

Already a Member?