Ask Larry

Can I Get A Second Trial Work Period If I Haven't Worked For 12 Years?

May I please ask if a disabled individual is allowed to attempt a second twp if they haven't worked for 12 years? I am disabled and can only work part time, on good days when my condition is less severe... but would very much like to work even if I am limited to ten-twelve hours due to my condition bc it would help me mentally to feel productive...or have I lost that opportunity bc I had used up my twp and had an overpayment which went to appeal court and my case was won and I was reinstated....I don't want to risk losing my ssdi benefits as they are my sole lifeline and I would become homeless....if I am not entitled to a second twp period..ty so much for your assistance


You only get one full 9-month trial work period (TWP) per period of disability. So, unless your Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits were terminated at some point and you've since become re-entitled to a new period of disability, then you wouldn't be eligible for another TWP.

I can't be sure without more information, but it sounds more likely that your SSDI benefits were suspended for a period of time after you completed your TWP and then re-instated when you stopped working. In that case, you'd still be in your initial period of disability, and you wouldn't be eligible for another TWP. If that's the case, you can still do some work and continue receiving SSDI benefits indefinitely as long as you don't earn more than what Social Security classifies as substantial gainful activity (SGA). The current monthly SGA earnings amount in 2020 is $1,260, so you'd probably be safe if you work as long as you don't earn more than that amount.

It's important to note that I don't have enough information about your benefits to be able to give you definite advice. Only Social Security would have access to the records needed to be able to give you definitive information, so you should check with them if you're considering attempting to work.

Best, Jerry

Nov 23 2020 - 8:40am
MaxiFi software running on a laptop
Get What's Yours!
Discover tens of thousands in extra retirement dollars with Maximize My Social Security software!
  • Find your maximized strategy
  • Unlimited what-ifs
  • Step-by-Step filing instructions
  • Our software's lifetime-benefit increase for an illustrative couple earning $65K each and planning to take retirement benefits at 62.

    Results will differ based on your specific case and filing strategy.

Getting Started is Easy
Web-based software. Works on ALL browsers. No download.
$40 Annual Household License
$250 Annual Financial Advisor License