Between Myth and Reality: Seniority Bonus

The seniority bonus, recognized in the Federal Labor Law, has been subject to various interpretations and criteria by the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation. This text seeks to clarify points of doubt about this benefit.

It is crucial to understand that the seniority bonus does not have an indemnity nature, as the employer’s obligation to pay it does not correspond to the compensation for damage. This benefit applies even when the employee voluntarily leaves their job. According to the legislator’s statement of reasons, it is a benefit derived from the length of service and should be granted at the end of the employment relationship.

The law establishes that the bonus applies to permanent employees, with indefinite contracts, excluding those hired for a specific project, according to jurisprudence. To calculate it, it is composed of the payment of 12 days of salary for each year of service, also allowing proportional payment if the last year is not completed.

It is important to consider the actual service time to the employer, excluding interruptions and suspensions, such as holidays, periods of incapacity, and legal and contractual breaks, among others.

Regarding its applicability, the seniority bonus applies in cases of voluntary separation only when the worker has at least 15 years of service. In cases of termination due to rescission, dismissal with or without cause, the worker is entitled to the bonus as it is not a voluntary decision.

In the event of death, the beneficiary of the deceased worker is entitled to the payment of the bonus for the entire work period. For those earning a salary greater than double the minimum wage, this will be the limit for the bonus calculation.

It is crucial to consider the timeframe for claims, as the law establishes one year from the day following the date on which the obligation becomes enforceable. Employers must take these specifications into account when carrying out labor termination processes to avoid waiving rights.

The labor team at Vega Guerrero & Asociados is at your disposal to provide the corresponding advice on this matter.


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