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Latin America is a region of great economic potential, with a growing middle class and a young population. However, businesses that are considering expanding into Latin America need to be aware of the region's complex labor laws.


This breakdown of LATAM labor laws provides an overview of the key aspects of labor law in the region. It covers topics such as applicable labor law, employer tax, employee tax, currency of the salary, and average paid time off.


Here are some of the key takeaways you’ll find in this breakdown:

1. Each country in Latin America has its own labor law, which sets forth the rights and obligations of employers and employees.

2. The applicable labor law is determined by the country where the work is performed, not the country where the employer or employee is located.

3. Employers in Latin America are typically required to pay a payroll tax, which is used to fund social security and other benefits for employees.

4. Employees in Latin America are typically required to pay income tax, which is based on their salary.

5. The currency of the salary in Latin America depends on the country.

6. The average paid time off in Latin America varies from country to country.

Aside from the latter, it is important to keep in mind that many Latin American countries use the principle of primacy of reality to determine the true nature of a relationship between an employer and an employee.

This principle, also known as the doctrine of the real relationship, holds that the actual circumstances of the relationship are more important than the legal terms of the contract. As a result, even if an employer and an employee have signed a contract that states that the relationship is one of independent contractorship, the courts may still find that the relationship is actually one of employment if the facts of the case indicate that the employee is under the control and direction of the employer.

To get a better understanding of how this principle applies, we have included a section that establishes the key elements that constitute a labor relationship, which are the aspects that can lead judges to determine the existence of a labor relationship.

By understanding the labor laws in Latin America, your company can make informed decisions about whether to expand into the region to avoid legal problems and ensure that they are complying with the law.

Labor law by country, Employer tax, and more


Disclaimer: This breakdown is intended to be a comprehensive and informative resource for businesses that are considering expanding into Latin America. It is not intended to be legal advice, and businesses should consult with an attorney or other qualified professional to get specific advice on the labor laws in the countries where they are doing business.