from the December 2011 Edition
The following information was sent to us by a good friend. It is a good idea for everyone who is hiring a Mexican worker for any reason to be aware of these laws. If hiring through a contractor, we believe that the contactor is then responsible for his workers welfare but it wouldn’t hurt to check that they are indeed his workers.
The labor laws for the Republic of Mexico vary for each type of employee, and each type of employer. Unfortunately, very few of us who hire maids and gardeners, hire them according to the law. We hire them all “under the table” so to speak.
The reason for this article is due to the increasing amount of labor claims against employers. We want to help protect you from these claims by providing information that everyone should follow. Since most of us hire domestic help, and are private individuals, we will advise on those circumstances.
First and foremost, write a contact between you and the employee. List the days you expect them to work, and how many hours they are expected to work in a day. Also include what you will be paying that individual per day, and on which day you will pay them. You must list all of their duties you expect of them as well, in detail. Make the contract for one year, renewing it yearly. Always have the employee sign a receipt for his or her pay.
Bonuses and Vacation
By law an employee can only work 40 hours a week and no more than 8 hours per day. Employees are also entitled to a Christmas bonus and vacation. For part-time help these times and amounts are voluntary. A good guideline for a Christmas bonus is to give them the equivalent of 2 weeks pay. For example, if your employee works 15 hours a week at 240 pesos per week, give them a 480 peso bonus. Remember to have them sign for it, and to also have the Christmas bonus mentioned in the employment contract.
Full-time employment has set rules for domestic help. Christmas bonus is equivalent to 15 days pay. For vacations, an employee is entitled to 6 paid days off for the first year, and 2 days more per year for every extra year worked. On the fifth year an additional 2 days is also added making 4 days added for the particular year
Full-time employees are entitled to have statutory holidays off with pay, unless they fall on said employees days off, such as weekends. If the employee works on a statutory holiday, said employee will be paid double time. Part-time employees are entitled to have the day off with pay as well, as long as the holiday falls on a day that the employee would normally work. Double time is paid if the employee works the holiday.
Severance pay is only paid to an employee that the employer lets go. If the employee quits or retires, no severance is paid to that employee. Make sure the employee signs a letter stating that they quit on their own.
An employee who has been fired or laid off, for whatever reason, is due severance. The employee is entitled to 3 months salary plus 20 days for every year worked, proportional vacation pay, and proportional Christmas bonus. Once this payment is made, make sure to have them sign off in agreement.
We know many people at Lakeside who have excellent relationships with their domestic help, but labor cases seem to be on the rise. If you are hiring someone new who was not recommended by someone, or if you just want to protect yourself, make sure you know what the rules are for your given situation.
Manzanillo Sun’s eMagazine written by local authors about living in Manzanillo and Mexico, since 2009