Trade Adjustment Assistance
Assisting Iowa's Dislocated Workers
 
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WorkerFor how many weeks can a training plan be written?

Trade Act of 2002 - A training plan may be written for up to 104 weeks.

Up to an additional 26 weeks of training, beyond the 104 weeks, may be possible if college entrance tests indicate that remedial/developmental coursework is needed and such coursework will cause a delay in completing the training program. The extra weeks of training you are allotted are based on the actual number of weeks you are in these remedial courses. For instance, if your remedial courses last for 8 weeks during one semester, you will be granted a total of 112 weeks (104 weeks + 8 weeks) within which to complete your entire training program.

The training plan must have exact dates written for the start/end of the training. The end date must be an actual graduation date.

Trade Act of 2009 - A training plan may be written for up to 156 consecutive weeks. This includes any remedial courses.

If you are requesting the additional developmental/remedial 26 weeks or a portion of the weeks, what needs to be provided when submitting your training plan?

These policies apply to both the Trade Act of 2002 and 2009. Required admissions test scores from the school you plan to attend, indicating you need developmental/remedial class(s). Examples of possible admissions/placement tests are Compass, Accuplacer, etc.

Otherwise, a recommendation (official letter on letterhead) from the training institution, explaining that you will need the developmental/remedial class(s) in order to succeed in your chosen program of study, would be adequate.

If the proper documentation is not received, you will not be granted the additional time.

Please note: Just because an individual needs developmental/remedial classes does not mean he/she is entitled to the entire 26-week period. The extra weeks of training you are allotted are based on the actual number of weeks you are in these remedial courses. For instance, if your remedial courses last for 8 weeks during one semester, you will be granted a total of 112 weeks (104 weeks + 8 weeks) within which to complete your entire training program.

How will you know when your training plan has been approved?

When your training plan has been approved, you will receive a copy of the 858 Request for Training form that has been signed by the Trade Act Coordinator. In the same envelope, you will also receive transportation reimbursement forms (if applicable), a consent for release of education records (so that we may obtain the final transcript from each school you attended), and information regarding the sending of grades and schedules after each term.

At the same time this is mailed to you, a contract is sent to your training institution to notify them that you are approved by the Trade Act for financial assistance with tuition, fees, and required books.

If you have enrolled in a training program that requires certain items/supplies/tools to be purchased by every student, how do you get reimbursed?

StudentYou will need to provide a copy of the syllabus or the required tool list for each purchase of required items/supplies/tools. These required items might also include requirements for physicals, shots, etc. that health science training programs often call for. If you are not purchasing all the required items/supplies/tools at one time, you will only need to submit the syllabus or required tool list once. However, if the syllabus changes each with each term or class, you will need to provide the documentation each time.

It is also important to remember that there is a $2000 cap on reimbursements for required tools/equipment.

In addition to the documentation showing that the items/supplies/tools are required, you will need to submit your original receipts connected to those purchases. All receipts must be originals. If you cannot provide the original receipt, do not expect to be reimbursed. Also, please understand that if the required documentation is not provided prior to, or with the receipt, this will delay your reimbursement.

Please note: Only books, supplies, and tools required of all students in the program or class are reimbursable. The Trade Act program cannot reimburse you for the item if it is only suggested, recommended, or deemed beneficial.

A syllabus for a class should not change after the start of a class. If a different syllabus is submitted later on, this will prompt a call to the training institution to verify that the syllabus changed.

What information must you keep the State office informed of?

You are required to keep your local case manager or the State Trade Act Office updated as to your progress and to any issues that are preventing you from attending or being successful in your training. If you are contacted by your local case manager or anyone at the State level, you are to contact them immediately.

I am a worker who is already part of a certified worker group. Can I get the benefits as provided under the New TAA Program instead of the benefits provided in the Old Program?

No. The law provides that workers covered by certification of petitions filed before May 18, 2009 will receive the benefits that were available under the old law. The exception is that workers covered by certifications of petitions filed under the Old TAA Program will receive the increased HCTC amount beginning in May 2009.

I filed a petition for TAA certification recently and my petition was denied. May I file a petition under the New TAA Program?

Yes. You may file another petition on or after May 18, 2009. If your petition meets the certification criteria that apply to a petition filed on or after that date, your petition will be granted and you will be eligible to apply for the benefits offered by the New Program. However, the amount of time you have to file a new petition is limited, since a certification does not cover workers laid off more than one year prior to the date of the petition.

I filed a petition currently under review by the Department of Labor but I think I want the benefits available under the New TAA Program. What should I do?

In order to be eligible for benefits under the New TAA Program instead of the benefits under the Old TAA program, workers must be covered by a petition filed on or after May 18, 2009. You (the petitioner) have the option of withdrawing the petition currently under investigation before a determination is made on that petition, then filing a new petition on or after May 18, 2009. If the new petition is certified, workers covered by that petition will be eligible to apply for benefits under the New TAA program.

PipefitterBefore withdrawing your petition, please note that a certification does not cover workers laid off more than one year prior to the date of the petition. This provision of law has not changed. Therefore, when deciding whether or not to withdraw your petition, it is important to consider how long before the filing of a new petition workers covered by that new petition would have been laid off. If workers were laid off nearly a year before the date of a petition currently under investigation, then withdrawing and resubmitting that petition could result in the exclusion of some workers from eligibility to apply for any TAA benefits. In addition, withdrawing and resubmitting a petition will result in the investigation of different time periods, which could change the outcome of the investigation from a certification to a denial (or from a denial to certification).

In order to withdraw your petition, you should contact the individual investigator assigned to your petition or the Trade Adjustment Assistance program office at 202-693-3560, if you do not have contact information for the investigator assigned to the case. Once the Department has issued a determination on your petition, it will not be possible to request a withdrawal. A written request should reference and confirm any oral request to withdraw a petition. While a new petition may be filed if your petition for certification has been denied, certifications issued under petitions filed before May 18, 2009 may not be modified to allow workers to apply for benefits available under the New TAA Program. In addition, while you may discuss your pending petition with the investigator, the decision on whether to withdraw a petition must be made by the individuals who originally filed the petition, and include all of the signatories to the petition.

What are some examples of new groups of workers that may now be certified under the New TAA Program?

Office WorkerAdditional groups of workers that may be certified include, but are not limited to:
  • Workers in firms that supply services.
  • Workers whose firm has shifted production to any foreign country.
  • Workers in public agencies.
  • Workers whose firm produces component parts of a finished article produced by its customer(s).
  • Workers in firms that supply testing, packaging, maintenance and transportation services to companies with TAA-certified workers.
  • Workers whose firm is identified in an International Trade Commission “injury” determination listed in the Act.

 
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