The first step in evaluating a disability claim is determining whether a claimant is performing “substantial gainful activity” or SGA.
The Unsuccessful Work Attempt
According to Social Security’s regulations, work you have done will not ordinarily show that you are capable of performing substantial gainful activity if, after working for a period of 6 months or less, your impairment forced you to stop working or to reduce significantly the amount of work you do.
Work That is Less Than Three (3) Months
Social Security will consider work of three months or less to be an “unsuccessful work attempt” if you stopped working, or you reduced your work and earnings below the substantial gainful activity earnings level, because of a disabling impairment or because of the removal of special conditions which took into account your impairment and permitted you to work.
If work is deemed an “unsuccessful work attempt” then such work will not be counted against the claimant in a Social Security disability claim.