With the amendment to the reform on vacations, there is more room for negotiation between employers and employees, experts agree

Note published on December 7 in El Economista, Empresas [Companies] Section by María del Pilar Martínez.
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Company labor specialists consider that the amendment to the ruling on proper vacations allows negotiation with the workers, in which different aspects such as productivity or the sector that the company belongs to are given priority with the objective of reaching an agreement on taking the 12 vacation days proposed by the Federal Congress.

Interviewed separately, Óscar de la Vega, partner at the De la Vega & Martinez Rojas Firm maintained that the Federal Labor Law “establishes the legal minimums, and benefits are increased based on collective bargaining negotiations, taking into account each company’s productivity, its economic possibilities, with the objective of keeping a balance between production and work factors”, which makes so many amendments unnecessary.

In this sense, he said that the action of increasing benefits and/or salaries by executive order “carries the grave risk of having an upward impact on the serious inflation that we are suffering, and another great risk, as well, is that being an employer becomes so expensive that small and micro enterprises seek to evade these costs through informality.”

Meanwhile, Jaime Bustamante, partner at the labor practice of DeForest Abogados, said that “the way in which the reform was adjusted is good news for the employer sector, they are given a breather; the sector knows about the need for this amendment, as they were lagging behind; what was always sought was to make the change gradually with the objective of reducing the impact.”

He added that this change in the number of vacation days, which would now be double the previous one, already represents a significant budgetary impact due to the need to cover people on vacation (hiring temporary employees) and other financial and operating cost repercussions, therefore, the fact that it was “included that the mandatory vacation period will be six days and the rest will be agreed upon based on the decision of both parties will help reduce the impact on costs.”

This application of this reform is planned to start on January 2023; but it is worth noting that “not all workers will benefit from it immediately. It will apply as of January first and it will be gradually adapted according to each employee’s labor conditions or the established periods, and they can gradually enjoy their vacations according with their rights and seniority. It is not an automatic change.”