Link American Airlines says almost 1,600 mechanics and maintenance clerks are seeking early-out payments to leave the financially strapped carrier. The workers could get $12,500 to $22,500 depending on their jobs. American said Wednesday that it expects employees taking the payments will leave over the next 12 months. Another 1,200 bag handlers signed up last month for early-out payments, which are intended to reduce layoffs. The airline sent layoff notices last week to more than 11,000 ground workers but said fewer than 4,400 would be furloughed. American parent AMR Corp., based in Fort Worth, Texas, filed for bankruptcy protection in November and is trying to cut annual labor spending by about $1 billion through layoffs, reduced benefits and other changes.