More than 55 million Social Security recipients are going to get a raise.  In 2012 they will get a 3.6% increase in their benefits because of inflation. It is the first increase in benefits since 2009. The cost-of-living increase will affect about one in five U.S. residents.There was no COLA increases in 2010 or 2011 because inflation was too low. Monthly Social Security payments average $1,082 monthly, with the increase pushing that up another $39 a month , or $467 annually.