DEFINITION of 'Trade Adjustment Assistance - TAA'

An unemployment assistance program offered in the United States to workers who have lost jobs due to the effects of international trade, specifically increased imports. The Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program provides job training and employment search services, as well as income and insurance assistance. In order to qualify for assistance, a group of workers must file a petition (or have one filed on their behalf) indicating that they have lost their jobs or have had reduced hours as the result of foreign trade. The program is administered by the Office of Trade Adjustment Assistance (OTAA).

BREAKING DOWN 'Trade Adjustment Assistance - TAA'

The legislation and program were desinged to reduce the impact on the U.S. job market due to the rise of globalization. There have been additional related programs such as the Trade and Globalization Adjustment Assistance Act (TGAAA) of 2009, which was a result of the worldwide economic downturn stemming from the 2007-2009 financial crisis. As companies closed down production and manufacturing and moved the jobs offshore, some unemployed persons found themselves lacking the skills for other job types while simultaneously experiencing mortgage defaults and credit problems. Fewer than 100,000 individuals were using the program as of 2011.

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