Topic: Latin America

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What are the latest developments on whistleblowing in the workplace?

The legislation relating to whistleblowing in the workplace can involve claims for labor harassment, crimes in the work place, corruption, non – fulfilment of regulations relating to outsourcing, hiring of foreign employees, the Health Committee responsible for supervising health and safety matters, amongst others.   Article 23 of the National Constitution, Article 24 of the … Continue reading

What measures are in place (or proposed) to address gender pay inequality in the workplace?

Efforts to reduce gender pay inequality have been rising all around the globe, without Colombia being an exception. The challenge of gender inclusiveness has to do with generational aspects that have brought cultural changes, including the evolution of women’s role in society. Colombian government has implemented initiatives to improve working conditions. Such initiatives have generated … Continue reading

Is it possible for employers to change the terms of employment contracts?

One wonders until what point the ability of the employer to subordinate an employee gives him the faculty to unilaterally amend the employment conditions. According to Colombian legislation, employers could change unilaterally the terms and conditions agreed with its employees based upon its subordination faculty. However, such change shall obey to reasonable situations that in … Continue reading

What protection do employees have against race discrimination?

According to Article 13 of the Colombian Political Constitution, each individual is born free and equal before the law. The same protection and treatment from the authorities is guaranteed. Every individual is entitled to the same rights, freedoms and opportunities without any discrimination on grounds of race among others. Article 10 of the Colombian Labor … Continue reading

What are the employment implications of the transfer of a business?

Colombian labor legislation provides automatic transfer of employees or “substitution of employer”, when three requirements are met (i) change from one employer to another, due to an agreement, sale, transfer or any other cause, (ii) the business continues, which means that the scope of the business developed by the former employer keeps all of its … Continue reading

What protection from discrimination do employees have on grounds of gender?

The Colombian legislation guarantees the equality within the employment environment, regardless of the gender. However, due to the role of women in society and at home, the reality shows that discrimination still occurs in the companies. There are several mechanisms to fight against the discrimination of gender. For instance, women have the possibility of filing … Continue reading

Notice rights – what rights do employees have to notice on termination of employment?

The rights that the employees do have to notice on termination of employment will mostly depend on the termination motive. According to Colombian labor legislation, employment agreements may terminate (i) without cause; (ii) with cause; (iii) due to the expiration of the term of duration; (iv) due to the termination of the task or job … Continue reading

What protection from discrimination do employees have on the grounds of sexual orientation?

Traditionally the grounds of sexual orientation have become a condition to discriminate. In Colombia, legal provisions focus in the prohibition of all forms of discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation and gender identity. According to Article 13 of the Colombian Political Constitution, each individual is born free and equal before the law, the same protection … Continue reading

What protection do employees have against discrimination on grounds of age?

To begin with, employment discrimination on grounds of age is not a problem only for workers in a specific age group in Colombia. For instance, young people feel discriminated against because of their lack of experience when seeking jobs for the first time, and the elderly feel rejected and undervalued when they are interested in … Continue reading

Obligations of the employers in Colombia regarding collective consultation on redundancy

In Colombia, companies are not obliged to request authorization from the unions to carry out downsizing processes. However, it is advisable to review if the collective bargaining agreements entered into with the unions include any obligation in this regard. According to Colombian labor law, redundancy, economic reasons and the fact that a role is no … Continue reading

Religion and other beliefs: May not constitute an issue to discriminate an employee in Colombia

Traditionally religion and other beliefs have become a condition to discriminate.  In Colombia, legal provisions focus in the prohibition of all forms of discrimination based on demonstration of religion or belief in worship. According to Article 19 of the Colombian Political Constitution, freedom of religion is guaranteed. Every individual has the right to freely profess … Continue reading

Minimum salary increase in Venezuela

On November 17, 2014, the President of the Republic issued Decree Nº 1.431 (the Decree), through which he increased the minimum salary for public and private sector workers by 15%. Such became effective on December 1, 2014. Minimum salary The Decree fixed the following scales for workers’ minimum salaries, with effect on December 1, 2014, … Continue reading

Amendment on the Nutrition Law

On November 13, 2014, the President issued a Decree with the Rank, Value and Force of Partial Amendment of the Nutrition Law for the Workers (“Nutrition Law”). The most innovative aspects of the amendment of the Nutrition Law, are the following: Value of the nutrition benefit The Nutrition Law increased the basis for the calculation of the … Continue reading

Protection from discrimination to disabled employees

Law 1618, 2013 guarantees the recognition of the rights of persons with disabilities, including affirmative actions to eliminate all forms of discrimination in accordance with 1346, 2009 Law. This provision ensures the following: recognition of the rights of children with disabilities; accompanying families; the right to habilitation and rehabilitation; to health; to education; to social … Continue reading

Are disabled employees under Venezuelan labour legislation protected from discrimination?

Yes, disabled employees are protected against discrimination in Venezuela pursuant to the Disable Person’s Law and the Organic Law on Prevention, Working Conditions, and the Work Environment. In fact, there is an express prohibition of discrimination by reason of incapacity. The purpose of the Disabled Persons’ Law is to establish the rules according to which disabled persons … Continue reading

Youth Employment Law

This post was contributed by Valentina Albarrán, Associate, Norton Rose Caracas. Youth Employment Law On October 8th, 2014 a Youth Employment Law (the “Law”) was approved by the Venezuelan President under the Enabling Law granted to the Executive Power by the Venezuelan Parliament. The Law has yet to be published in the Official Gazette of … Continue reading

Flexible working – achieving a work life balance under Venezuelan labour legislation

This post was contributed by Yanet C. Aguiar, Partner, Norton Rose Caracas and Valentina Albarrán, Associate, Norton Rose Caracas. In the modern age, work has become an increasingly important part of a person’s life. From the standpoint of western civilization, work is not only viewed as an activity people do in order to subsist, but … Continue reading

Mandatory Military Registration

This post was written by María Gabriela Vicent, Associate, Norton Rose Fulbright (Caracas) A new Law for Registration and Enlisting for the Integral Defense of the Nation (the “Law”) was enacted on June 25, 2014, forcing individuals and companies to register in the Integral Defense Registry (Military registry). Among the obligations set by the Law … Continue reading
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