United Steelworkers Union members have been locked out of their jobs at the Allegheny Technologies, Inc. plant in Midland since August. In the beginning, workers were optimistic that they would be able to return to the job soon. As the months go by, many workers have taken other, lower paying, jobs and those who were still holding out hope of returning to ATI are being given reason to doubt that will happen as rumors of the plant soon idling spread.
I’ve met with approximately six of the locked out ATI workers at our office in Beaver. They are frustrated by the continued lockout and concerned for their financial future as they realize that other employers in the area are not offering as high of wages as they are used to. This means that they will have to undergo a lifestyle change and scrutinize all of their expenditures.
Thankfully, the former ATI employees I’ve met with have been able to find other employment that allows them to cover their basic living expenses like mortgage or rent, car payment, utilities, etc. However, they don’t have the extra money to cover credit card or personal loan payments. When things were good at ATI, they spent freely and accumulated some debt in doing so. No one saw the lockout coming and they were not prepared for the drop in income.
At a free consultation, I was able to counsel the ATI lockout employees about their bankruptcy options. Chapter 7 allows qualifying individuals to eliminate credit cards, medical bills and personal loans just to name a few. Chapter 13 allows people who have some extra money to repay some or all of their debts over a three to five year period. Both options allow the former ATI employees to adjust their expenses to their new incomes while being able to keep their house, car and other things that are important to them.
If you find yourself without work or with a lower paying job, give Steidl and Steinberg a call. We can help you get your finances in order with a free consultation at one of our convenient neighborhood offices. It’s our goal to make this transition a little easier for you.