Note published in El Economista, Empresas [Companies] Section by María del Pilar Martínez.
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Héctor de la Cruz, labor specialist at D&M Abogados, explained that as part of the changes to the Federal Labor Law – Article 311 and the inclusion of Articles 330A to 330K – the employment contract must now specify the amount that the employer will pay for the concept of services related to home office work.
As part of the significant changes approved by the representatives of the Commission of Labor on working from home, we find the fact that home office is only considered as such when the time that the worker works in this modality is more than 40% of his working hours; that is, in the case of a working week of 48 hours (8 hours per day), the worker would have to work more than 19.2 hours from home, or the place of his choosing, to be considered as a teleworker (remote worker).
In an interview with Héctor de la Cruz, labor specialist at D&M Abogados, he explained that as part of the changes to the Federal Labor Law – Article 311 and the inclusion of Articles 330A to 330K – the employment contract must now specify the amount that the employer will pay for the concept of services related to home office work, which include electricity, internet, telephone and others.
De la Cruz said that “the working hours must adjust to the legal maximums and, therefore, companies must implement measures to monitor attendance and effective service time. Collective bargaining agreements must include teleworking as part of the working conditions, as long as the activities are compatible. And internal work regulations must also regulate this modality, based on the law.
Additionally, he pointed out that the employer has the obligation of installing and giving maintenance to work tools (ergonomic chairs, printers, computers, etc.), assuming the costs of connection and electricity in a proportional part.
The right of the worker to disconnection is also included, understanding as such, that the worker can turn the equipment off, not answer calls or mails, etc. at the end of his working hours, with the objective of allowing him to devote time to other personal activities.
The change to this modality can be made only with the worker’s consent and he will have, at all times, the right of reversibility, that is, he can decide to change to a presential modality.
In no case may the home office worker earn less that a worker who works at the facilities of the work source.
“This bill represents great progress in our country where, up to now and despite the Covid-19 pandemic, did not have an appropriate regulation that protected the rights of the workers. It is possible that it may be approved before the end of this year in the plenary session of the House of Representatives”, stated Héctor de la Cruz.