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Former ATA worker files class-action lawsuit

April 9, 2008
An ATA Airlines employee who was fired April 3, when the Indianapolis-based regional carrier filed bankruptcy and ceased operations, is suing the company for back pay.

The class action filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court by Kevin Batman claims ATA violated federal law by terminating more than 1,000 workers without giving a 60-day written notice.

ATA employed roughly 2,300 workers, including 560 in Indianapolis, who are seeking wages, salary, commissions, bonuses, accrued holiday pay and vacation, 401(k) contributions and health insurance.

James Kowalik and Jeffrey Hokanson of the Indianapolis law firm of Hostetler & Kowalik P.C are representing Batman in the suit.

The cancellation of a key military charter contract with FedEx, coupled with soaring fuel prices, forced the company into bankruptcy.

Global Aero Logistics Inc. owns ATA and is not affected by the bankruptcy filing. Its headquarters moved last fall from Indianapolis to Peachtree City, Ga. Global Aero is majority-owned by New York-based MatlinPatterson Global Advisers LLC, which purchased ATA out of bankruptcy two years ago.

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