Trade Act Guide
Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act - 2002
This guide provides information regarding the benefits available under the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) Reform Act of 2002. It also presents your rights and responsibilities when filing for these benefits. Call the Department of Workforce Services (DWS) /jobseeker/contactus.asp">Unemployment Insurance (UI) Claims Center for specific information. For more information about Alternative Trade Adjustment Assistance (ATAA) see http://www.doleta.gov/tradeact/benefits.cfm.
Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) is available to individuals laid off from employers certified by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) as having been directly affected by increased imports or certain shifts of production to other countries that have a free trade agreement with the United States or party to other trade act agreements. Petitions may be filed by three workers, a company official, a union official, a duly authorized representative of the workers, or a Utah DWS representative. Trade Act petitions are mailed directly to the Department of Labors Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance (DTAA) in Washington DC and with the TAA Coordinator at the Dislocated Worker Unit (DWU) at DWS.
DTAA investigates the petition. Investigations typically take 40 days. After investigating the petition, DTAA certifies or denies eligibility to apply for TAA services and benefits, and notifies petitioners and a company official. If DOL certifies a company, affected workers who meet the qualifying requirements may receive Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA) and Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA).
- Certified workers individually apply for TAA services through DWS Employment Centers.
- Certified workers individually apply for TRA benefits by calling the /jobseeker/contactus.asp">Utah UI Claims Center.
- Denied workers may appeal.
Workers must be enrolled in training eight weeks after certification or 16 weeks after their last qualifying separation to receive TRA benefits, or a waiver of training enrollment must be granted by the state.
Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA)
- TRA refers to weekly unemployment benefits payable under the Act. TRA benefits include:
- Basic Entitlement: If you qualify for TRA after you exhaust all rights to regular and federal benefits (if available), the total number of weeks of your regular benefit entitlement and number of weeks you were paid federal benefits will be subtracted from 52 weeks to determine the TRA portion of your basic entitlement.
- Additional Entitlement: If you make a timely initial application for training (within 210 days from separation date or certification date, whichever is later), and approved training extends beyond your basic entitlement, you may be eligible to file for TRA benefits during an additional 52-week filing period.
- Remedial Education Entitlement up to 26 additional weeks, if remedial education was approved in the overall training program.
- To qualify for TRA, you must have worked for the trade-affected employer at least 26 weeks at wages of $30 or more a week during the 52-week period ending with the week of your total job separation.
- TRA benefits are paid only after you have exhausted all rights to state and federal unemployment benefits. To be eligible for TRA benefits, you must:
- be enrolled in TAA-approved training by the later of
- the end of the 16th week from your first qualified job separation date; or
- the last day of the 8th week after the date of certification; or
- have completed TAA-approved training after a qualifying separation; or
- have a written waiver from DWS if training is not feasible or appropriate.
- be enrolled in TAA-approved training by the later of
- If you receive a waiver from attending training while filing for TRA basic entitlement, you must:
- actively seek work as instructed (if you do not seek work or if you refuse work, you may be denied benefits)
- keep your own records of employer contacts on a weekly basis. These contacts may be verified with the employers. Your report must include the following: (1) date of contact, (2) company name and telephone number, (3) person contacted, (4) type of work, (5) method of contacts, and (6) results.
- After filing your TRA claim, you will be notified of your benefit entitlement. You will also be notified when you have received all benefits payable to you or if your benefits are denied for any reason.
- If you are denied TRA benefits you may appeal the decision.
- If you have been granted DWS department approval of training under Trade Act, you are not required to actively seek work.
- If your final job separation occurs within the certification period and you qualify for TRA, you have 104 weeks (beginning the week after your total job separation) in which to file for the TRA Basic entitlement. If you are recalled to work covered by the same certification period and again meet the qualifying requirements for TRA, the 104-week period will be recalculated to begin the week after the subsequent separation.
The Trade Act provides for a federal tax credit of 65% of the health plan premium for TAA eligible individuals enrolled in qualified health plans. To qualify for the credit, individuals must be receiving TRA or would be eligible to receive TRA except that their unemployment insurance (UI) benefits have not yet exhausted or ended and must be participating in a qualified health plan. For more information on HCTC, visit the Web at www.irs.gov/individuals or call the HCTC Customer Contact Center toll-free 1-866-628-HCTC (1-866-628-4282). For information on enrolling in a state qualified health plan, contact the Trade Affected Assistance Bureau at 1-800-565-3234.
To determine if you qualify for TRA, contact the Department of Workforce Services UI /jobseeker/contactus.asp">Claims Center.
If you are certified by DOL under part of the certified worker group, you may receive one or more of the following benefits:
- Reemployment Services, including:
- Employment Registration
- Employment Counseling
- Case Assessment
- Job Development
- Supportive Services
- Self-Directed Job Search Services
- Training Services: Up to 104* weeks of approved training, including:
- Classroom training
- On-the-job training
- Employer-based training
- Basic or remedial education (including literacy training and English as a Second Language)
- Job Search Allowances - To qualify, your application for job search allowance must be made at the nearest DWS Employment Center before your job search begins. (The application must be filed prior to the certification decision if the job search begins prior to certification.) Your application must also be made within 365 days of the date DOL certified your employer as having been adversely affected by foreign imports; or within 365 days of your last total separation from the trade-affected company. You may apply for job search allowances within 182 days of completion of an approved training course if this is after the 365-day limit. The search may not begin prior to the date of separation.
- Relocation Allowances - To qualify, your application for relocation allowances must be made at the nearest DWS Employment Center before the relocation begins. (The application must be filed prior to the certification decision if the relocation begins prior to certification.) If your application is filed after you relocate, you will not be paid any relocation allowances. Your application must be made within 425 days of the date DOL certified your employer as having been adversely affected by foreign imports, or within 182 days of completion of an approved training course if this is after the 425-day limit. The relocation may not begin prior to the date of separation.
- If you are denied benefits, you may appeal the decision.
* Up to 26 additional weeks are available to workers who require remedial training.
There is no time limit to apply for training allowances to cover your actual training costs (tuition, books, etc.). However, to be eligible for the additional 52-week entitlement of TRA, you must have applied for training within 210 days of the date of your most recent total or partial separation, or within 210 days of the date DOL certified your employer as having been trade affected.
The application for training must be filed on the proper form showing your name, petition number, and type of training. If you wish to apply for training out of state, the state of training is responsible for payment of training-related costs. Training approval will not be granted if that state has insufficient funds to pay the full cost of training.
Applications for Training, Health Insurance Coverage Assistance, Job Search, or Relocation Allowances should be made at the nearest DWS Employment Center. Applications for Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA) and information about the health insurance tax credit should be made by telephone to the /jobseeker/contactus.asp">Unemployment Insurance Claims Center.
DWS Employment Centers are full service career centers. They are the focal points of your job search where you can learn about all of the assistance available to help you get back in the workforce.