Faehnrich v. Bentz Metal Products Company
253 F.3D 283, 2001.C07.0000281 , 167 L.R.R.M. (BNA) 2344, 37 BANKR.CT.DEC. 277
Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals
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Indiana law broadly protects the rights of workers ("mechanics and laborers employed in or about any shop, mill, wareroom, storeroom,. .. bridge, reservoir,. .. drainage ditch. .. or any other earth-moving operation. .. ." in the charming, though antiquated, language of the old Hoosier statute) against losing wages due when an employer encounters tough economic times. It does so by moving workers to the front of the companys creditor queue with a mechanics lien that trumps the rights of other creditors to the companys assets. Today we consider whether that lien, established under Indiana Code sec. 32-8-3-1 et seq., protects unionized workers to the same extent it undoubtedly protects the rights of nonunionized workers. We find that it does, a determination that compels us to overrule In re Bluffton Castings Corp., 186 F.3d 857 (7th Cir. 1999).