The very talented & highly-reliable Chapala lawyer, Lic. Spencer McMullen notes that: “Domestic workers are an exemption in the law, for them IMSS is not mandatory.” and “The law doesn’t distinguish between part time and full time employees.”
But … that exemption does not exclude/exempt us from paying Aguinaldos, Severance Pay, Vacation pay, etc.
Other key calculations:
If the employee worked more than 28 days, it’s at least an automatic 90 days of salary. See the “Finiquito” section below for specifics.
2. Prima de antiguedad
12 days pay per each year worked.
3. Vacation pay
Vacation pay for current year worked (remember that they should also receive this pay over the past years worked)
1st year – 6 days salary
2 years – 8 days
3 years – 10 days
4 years – 12 days
5 to 9 years – 14 days
10 to 14 years – 16 days
15 to 19 years – 18 days
20 to 24 years – 20 days
25 to 29 years – 22 days
30 to 34 years – 24 days
35 to 39 years – 26 days
The annual aguinaldo is the equivalent of 15 days of pay.
It is NOT a Christmas bonus. It is a mandatory wage payment that is due by the 20’th of December.
One way of determining the annual aguinaldo is to multiply the total days they worked in current year by 15, then divide by 365 days, and then multiply by the daily rate:
For a worker that comes in 2 days a month for 9 months => 18 days x 15 = 270
270 / 365 = 0.7392 … 0.74 x $Daily Rate ($100 pesos?) = $ 73.92
Note. The “Daily Rate” is based on a full week. For example, if your maid only works two days per week, and gets paid $700 pesos per week ($350 pesos per day of work). You take the weeks salary of $700 divided by 7 = $100 pesos is the daily rate.
Calculators for final severance benefits being paid to domestic and household help (muchachas y mozos):
**If the employee quits, then the amount owed to them is small.
Under CALCULAR – select: ” SOLO FINIQUITO “.
LIQUIDACION + 20 DIAS … is for an outright termination without documented cause.
LIQUIDACION is a mutually agreed upon termination.
Salario Diario: Take the amount paid in a week and divide by 7 for daily rate.
For example, a person who works 2 days a week and makes $350 p / day. Take $700 pesos divided by 7 => a daily rate of $100 pesos.
Salario Diario Integrado: This is the same as the daily rate, unless you are paying extra for healthcare etc.
Área geográfica donde trabajó: generally “B”,
… unless you are in Zone “A” which includes Mexico City, Monterrey, Acapulco, Guadalajara, Puebla, etc and all of of Baja California and Baja California Sur.
As always: Prepare a termination letter + a copy. Be sure it is signed and witnessed.
It is best to contact a good labor lawyer to find out the latest rules and the local twists of your state, but for general information, consider these rules of thumb:
1. When an employee is terminated, he is entitled to termination pay; unless:
1a. The employment was for a specified period of time, such as the period of building a house, or for house sitting for a winter while the owner is out of town. It is best to have the time period stipuled in writing.
1b. Termination for “just cause”. This can be a very complicated issue. It is best to get the help of a labor lawyer, as the employee can wreak havoc by appealing to the labor review board. “Just cause” is spelled out in detail in the law.
Termination pay shall include 3-months of salary plus 20 days for each year worked plus prorated vacation and Christmas pay.
20 days of salary means 20 times the daily rate (which is 1/7 of the weekly rate).
Example: A maid worked 2 days per week for $50 pesos per day for 4 years. That is $100 per week. There are 13 weeks in 3 months. Her daily rate is $100/7 = $14.29.
Her termination pay would be ($13 x 100) + (20 x $14.29 x 4) = $2443.20 … plus any Christmas and vacation pay that may be due.
If the termination payment cannot be made at the time of termination, regular salary shall continue until the termination is paid in full.
If the employee quits voluntarily, termination pay is sometimes considered to be not required.** (See the ** section above for calculating the finiquito .)
For this reason, a common tactic to avoid termination pay is to induce the employee to quit. … Be careful with this because Mexican Labor law describes what an employer cannot do to harass a worker and his family.
According to multiple lawyers, the severance pay package is negotiable … but it must be at the written agreement of both parties, and generally requires a good relationship with the employee, plus signed receipts and the signed & witnessed release.
2012 Original Article
Pres. Calderón signed a new Ley Federal de Trabajo this past Thursday. According to labor law experts, a number of rules governing expats and their employees have remained the same, while other sections have changed substantially, including the sections describing how employers are allowed to treat their household help and their construction workers. . . .
The full article on the New Labor Law is at
Mexico’s New 2012 Labor Law and The Effects on Expats with Household Help
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© Steven M. Fry
Read on, MacDuff.