Judge Permits Patriot Coal To Scuttle Union Contracts

Law360, Chicago (May 29, 2013, 7:51 PM EDT) -- A Missouri bankruptcy judge on Wednesday cleared Patriot Coal Corp. to slash health care benefits for retirees and force other concessions from its miners’ union, agreeing with the company that the cuts are necessary for its survival.

In a 102-page opinion, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kathy A. Surratt-States approved Patriot’s bid to reject its collective bargaining agreements and offload its retiree health care plan to a union trust, overruling objections from the United Mine Workers of America.

St. Louis-based Patriot, the 10th largest coal producer in the...
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