SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home1103. Does length of time engaged in an activity determine a trade or business?

The length of time you engage in an activity usually is a factor in determining if it is a trade or business. If the activity is seasonal or of short duration, however, the period of time is not important.

Selling ice cream during the summer months or owning a grocery store for a short time before selling it. The short time period would not prevent the activity from being covered by Social Security.