Principal axes of the new 40-hour law

After Congress approves the 40 Hours Law, which modifies the Labor Code, is ready for its enactment and subsequent publication in the Official Gazette for its entry into force. The initiative seeks to improve workers’ quality of life, reduce the working day and promote a balance between work and personal life.

The new law establishes that the weekly working day will be 40 hours, a reduction of 5 hours before its approval, and its application will be gradual over a maximum period of 5 years. The schedule is as follows:

– One year after the law enters into force: the working day will be reduced from 45 to 44 hours per week.

– Three years after the law enters into force: working hours will be reduced to 42 hours per week.

– 5 years after the law enters into force: working hours will be reduced to 40 hours per week.

As some companies have already done, these deadlines are the maximum, which allows the employer to bring them forward.

In addition, the legislator considered special working day regimes that work in continuous processes, allowing it to compensate for the excess over 40 hours with additional annual rest days.

The new regulation establishes a mechanism of parental co-responsibility with time bands for mothers, fathers, and caregivers of children under 12 who can bring forward/delay the start/end of work.

In agreement with the workers, employers who implement the 40-hour law in advance can establish a 4×3 regime (4 working days and three rest days) without waiting for the gradual implementation indicated in the law.

The averaging of the workday is also allowed, which will allow, in agreement with the worker or union if they are a unionized worker, that the 40-hour workday is calculated on average in 4 weeks, with a maximum limit 40 hours per week.

Upon agreement between the employer and the employee, compensating overtime with up to 5 days of additional holidays is possible.

The new regulation establishes restrictions for Article 22, paragraph 2, of the Labor Code, which applies only to those who perform senior management tasks and are not subject to superior supervision according to the nature of their functions.

The law also expressly recognizes electronic control systems.

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