Skip to content
Social Security Online
Automatic Increases
Office of the Chief Actuary SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home

Trial Work Period

Updated October 17, 2007

Automatic Increases

SSI payment standard

Wage-indexed amounts

Earnings trigger a trial work period
During a trial work period, a beneficiary receiving Social Security disability benefits may test his or her ability to work and still be considered disabled. We do not consider services performed during the trial work period as showing that the disability has ended until services have been performed in at least 9 months (not necessarily consecutive) in a rolling 60-month period. In 2007, any month in which earnings exceed $640 is considered a month of services for an individual's trial work period. In 2008, this monthly amount increases to $670.

Monthly earnings that trigger a trial work period
Year Monthly earnings
1978 & prior$50
For more information, please see section 404.1592 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Method used to determine earnings that trigger a trial work period
Monthly earnings in 2008, used to determine whether a month is part of a trial work period, is such amount for 2001 multiplied by the ratio of the national average wage index for 2006 to that for 1999, or, if larger, such amount for 2007 ($640). If the amount so calculated is not a multiple of $10, we round it to the nearest multiple of $10. Below are details on how we determined the latest amount.

Calculation details
Amounts in
2001 monthly earnings$530
1999 average wage index$30,469.84
2006 average wage index$38,651.41
Computation$530 times ($38,651.41 divided by $30,469.84) equals $672.31, which rounds to $670.
Higher amount$670 exceeds $640, so the amount for 2008 is $670 Portal to U.S. government agencies Privacy Policy  | Website Policies & Other Important Information  | Site Map
Need Larger Text?