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Injured workers must be protected, even in bankruptcy

Just because your business is in financial trouble doesn’t mean you can ignore the needs of your injured workers. That is the situation in the case Chrysler LLC, 09-50002, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

Apparently Chrysler is carrying liabilities of as much as $150 million as a result of workers’ compensation claims.  What does this mean for the impending sale of the company?

State agencies are arguing that any sale or auction of Chrysler’s business should not be allowed unless they can ensure that all injured workers will be paid the benefits they are due.  The lead bidder, Fiat SpA, or any other buyer, would be expected to assume liabilities for the injured workers.

In a filing the Michigan’s Funds Administration and Workers’ Compensation Agency stated that they do not wish to delay the proposed sale, rather they want to ensure that Chrysler continues to pay their injured workers what they are due. The case is being heard by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Arthur Gonzalez.