Trade Adjustment Assistance Program Reauthorized
Deadline approaching for workers impacted by foreign trade to apply for retroactive TAA certification
(DENVER) -- On June 29, President Obama signed into law the Trade Adjustment Assistance
(TAA) Reauthorization Act of 2015. TAA provides assistance to American workers adversely
affected by international trade at no cost to either the employer or job seeker.
When foreign competition leads businesses to shut down or move overseas, dislocated workers
can obtain the skills, resources, and support they need to get reemployed. Services available
through TAA may include retraining, relocation allowances, a health care tax credit and, in some
cases, extended unemployment benefits.
The new legislation reestablishes the TAA program through June 30, 2021 and includes some
substantive changes in worker eligibility, benefits, services and deadline dates.
Expanded Eligibility In 2014, Congress changed the program to make it available only to workers in manufacturing
whose job losses were due to increased imports from -- or a shift in production to -- a country in
which the U.S. has a Free-Trade agreement.
The Reauthorization Act of 2015 now adds workers from the Service Sector (such as people laid
off from service businesses like call centers) as eligible to apply. In addition, all workers
unemployed because of foreign trade, regardless of the country involved, are eligible to apply.
The Trade Adjustment Assistance Reauthorization Act applies retroactively to 01/01/2014. That
means workers whose petitions were previously denied will again be reconsidered for eligibility.
The U.S. Department of Labor will automatically reconsider denials of petitions that had been
filed in 2014 through June 29, 2015.
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment wants trade impacted workers and
employers who did not previously file for a petition due to the limited eligibility to only
manufacturing and countries with trade agreements to file before September 27,2015. These
petitions will be considered to have an effective date of January 1, 2014.
Expanded Benefits Income support is provided through TAA for workers needing to complete a degree or equivalent
program. In addition, the provision called the Health Care Tax Credit has also been reinstated,
making health coverage more affordable for eligible individuals and their families.
Petitions can be filed by at the U.S. Department of Labor’s website.