Improved Labor Laws for Domestic Employees in Mexico
One of the luxuries of living in Mexico is being able to afford to hire a housekeeper, nanny, or a gardener. Domestic workers typically have a casual agreement with their employer and are often paid in cash without benefits. If you employ domestic workers, you should be aware of the recent changes to labor laws for these workers.
Although this will take time to make a difference in people’s lives, laws are changing to improve the work life of domestic employees and underage children.
Mexican Congress voted unanimously to expand the labor rights for domestic workers. The new labor reform was approved and published May 1, 2019, in the Official Gazette of the Federation.
Most domestic workers in Mexico work for cash and without a contract, which means they are not protected by labor laws, health benefits, or pension. Many of Mexico’s domestic workers are impoverished women who come from destitute areas seeking employment. Although some employers treat their staff as family and may provide an excellent work environment, many find themselves working long hours without the benefits of fundamental labor rights at the mercy of their employer’s whims. Workers have been denied pay or time off and suffered abuse under the threat of losing their job.
These new labor laws will provide dignity and fundamental rights to everyone, including underage children. Children under 15 are prohibited from working, and teenagers over the age of 15 may work no more than six hours a day.
Hiring a domestic employee will hold the same legal obligations as if you owned a business. The employer will now be required to formalize the employment with a contract, and offer the same rights as any employee in Mexico including a salary based on at least minimum wage, be registered for social security and healthcare, receive holiday bonuses, days off and maternity leave. Live-in employees will be entitled to a minimum of 9 hours of rest a day.
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