The Trade Program assists workers who have been laid off or whose jobs have been threatened because of foreign competition.
Workers covered under a certified Trade Act Petition may be eligible to receive an array of services and benefits including:
- reemployment services
- job search allowances
- relocation allowances
- trade readjustment allowances
- wage subsidy for older workers
- health coverage tax credit benefits
Read the Trade Adjustment Assistance Program Fact Sheet.
Trade Readjustment Allowances
Trade-affected workers covered under a certified Trade Act petition who have been totally or partially separated from their jobs because of increase imports or a shift in production may be eligible to receive Trade Readjustment Allowances. Trade Readjustment Allowances provide assistance to workers who are looking for work or who are enrolled in an approved training program. Trade Readjustment Allowances is an extension of regular Reemployment Assistance benefits payable at the same weekly benefit amount.
Trade Act Certifications
A petition must be filed with the US Department of Labor by or on behalf of a group of workers who have experienced a job loss as a result of foreign trade. After the US Department of Labor investigates the facts behind the petition, it determines whether statutory criteria are met. If the Department grants the petition to certify the worker group, individual workers may apply for TAA benefits and services through their State Workforce Agency.
On August 6, 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law H.R. 3009, the Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-210). The Act makes several amendments to the Trade Act of 1974. The Act also repeals subchapter D of chapter 2 of Title II of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (the North American Free Trade Agreement-Transitional Adjustment Assistance (NAFTA-TAA) program).
In addition to repealing NAFTA-TAA and consolidating this program into the Trade Adjustment Assistance, these changes expand eligibility to more worker groups, increases benefits, provides tax credits for health insurance coverage assistance, increases timeliness for benefit receipt, training and rapid response assistance, legislates a specific waiver provisions and establishes other Trade Adjustment Assistance programs.
The Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act generally did not amend the job retraining provisions of the 1974 Act, except that customized training may now be approved for import-impacted workers.
Under the Trade Act of 1974, workers who are totally or partially separated or may become separated from employment as a result of imports being a substantial cause of the worker’s actual or threatened separation, may be certified by the secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor as being eligible to apply for the adjustment assistance provided by the Act (also see section 112 of Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act).
The program’s benefits for workers include weekly trade readjustment allowances, training, job search, relocation allowances and health insurance. In addition, eligible individuals may receive the full range of employability services such as counseling, testing, job referral, etc., which are available to all customers.