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[IWS] CRS: TRADE ADJUSTMENT ASSISTANCE FOR WORKERS [17 December 2012]

IWS Documented News Service

_______________________________

Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau

________________________________________________________________________

 

Congressional Research Service (CRS)

 

Trade Adjustment Assistance for Workers

Benjamin Collins, Analyst in Labor Policy

December 17, 2012

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R42012.pdf

[full-text, 30 pages]

 

Summary

Trade Adjustment Assistance for Workers (TAA) provides federal assistance to workers who have

been adversely affected by foreign trade. It was most recently authorized by the Trade Adjustment

Assistance Extension Act of 2011 (TAAEA; Title II of P.L. 112-40).

 

To be eligible for TAA, a group of workers must establish that they were separated from their

employment either because their jobs moved outside the United States or because of an increase

in directly competitive imports. Workers at firms that are suppliers to or downstream producers of

TAA-certified firms may also be eligible for TAA benefits. Under current law, both production

and service workers are eligible for TAA.

 

After the Department of Labor verifies the role of foreign trade in the group’s job losses, workers

may apply for individual benefits. These benefits are funded by the federal government and, with

limited exception, administered by the states.

 

• Reemployment services are available to assist trade-affected workers in planning

for and returning to employment. Training is the largest reemployment service

expense. Eligible training programs include a variety of public and private

options and may not exceed 104 weeks. In lieu of or in addition to training,

workers may receive employment services such as case management, skills

assessment, and job search assistance. Workers may also receive allowances for

job searches outside their local commuting area and relocation expenses once a

new job has been secured. Under current law, annual expenditures on

reemployment services are capped at $575 million.

 

• Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA) is an income support for TAA-certified

workers who have exhausted their unemployment insurance (UI) and are enrolled

in an eligible training program. TRA payments are equal to the workers’ final UI

benefit. Workers may receive UI and TRA for a combined total of 117 weeks and

130 weeks under certain circumstances.

 

• Reemployment Trade Adjustment Assistance (RTAA) is available to TAAcertified

workers age 50 and over. This program supplements the wages of

eligible workers who secure new employment at a lower wage.

 

• A Health Coverage Tax Credit (HCTC) is also available to TAA-certified

workers. This program offers a refundable tax credit equal to 72.5% of

expenditures on a qualified health plan. Unlike other TAA benefits, the HCTC is

administered through the federal tax code and not by state agencies.

 

Eligibility and benefits for TAA are scheduled to be reduced beginning on January 1, 2014. The

program will operate under these reduced provisions for one year before authorization for

appropriations expires on December 31, 2014.

 

This report provides background on the TAA program. After a brief introduction, it discusses

TAA eligibility and benefits as set by TAAEA. It then describes how the program is funded and

administered. The report concludes by presenting data on recent application activity and benefit

usage.

 

 

Contents

Introduction ...................................................................................................................................... 1

Eligibility and Application Process .................................................................................................. 1

TAA Group Eligibility Criteria .................................................................................................. 1

TAA Group Petition and Certification Process .......................................................................... 2

TAA Individual Eligibility ......................................................................................................... 3

RTAA Eligibility ........................................................................................................................ 3

Benefits ............................................................................................................................................ 6

Reemployment Services ............................................................................................................ 6

Case Management and Employment Services .................................................................... 6

Training Assistance ............................................................................................................. 6

Job Search and Relocation Allowances ............................................................................... 8

Trade Readjustment Allowance ................................................................................................. 8

Health Coverage Tax Credit ...................................................................................................... 9

Reemployment Trade Adjustment Assistance ......................................................................... 10

Financing and Administration ........................................................................................................ 12

Participation and Program Data ..................................................................................................... 13

Applications and Certification Activity ................................................................................... 13

Reemployment Services .......................................................................................................... 14

Training Assistance ........................................................................................................... 14

Case Management ............................................................................................................. 17

Job Search and Relocation Allowances ............................................................................. 17

Trade Readjustment Allowances ............................................................................................. 18

Health Coverage Tax Credit .................................................................................................... 19

Reemployment Trade Adjustment Assistance ......................................................................... 20

Post-TAA Performance Data for Program Exiters ................................................................... 21

 

Tables

Table 1. TAA Group Certification Requirements Under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011..................................... 5

Table 2. TAA Benefits Under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011 ............... 11

Table 3. Petitions and Certifications, FY2003-FY2011 ................................................................. 14

Table 4. Training and Benefit Data for TAA-Certified Workers, FY2003-FY2011 ...................... 15

Table 5. Ten Largest Recipients of TAA Reemployment Services Funding, FY2011 ................... 16

Table 6. Job Search and Relocation Allowance Participation, FY2003-2011 ............................... 18

Table 7. Trade Readjustment Allowance Participation and Costs, FY2003-FY2011 .................... 19

Table 8. Reemployment Trade Adjustment Assistance, FY2003-FY2011 ..................................... 21

Table 9. Employment Outcomes for TAA Exiters ......................................................................... 21

Table B-1. Trade Adjustment Assistance, Petition Activity and Benefit Usage, FY2003-

FY2011 ....................................................................................................................................... 25

 

Appendixes

Appendix A. Legislative History ................................................................................................... 23

Appendix B. Petition Activity and Benefit Usage, FY2003-FY2011 ............................................ 24

 

Contacts

Author Contact Information........................................................................................................... 26

Acknowledgments ......................................................................................................................... 26

 

 

________________________________________________________________________

This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

 




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