On May 1, 2019, a decree in which the Federal Labor Law was amended was published. Its Eleventh Transitory Article established the obligation of the unions to carry out the legitimization of the Collective Bargaining Agreements (hereinafter CBA) with the purpose of ratifying the content of the already existing CBAs, as a measure to guarantee freedom, transparency, and union democracy.
It was pointed out that the CBA must be legitimized with a consultation in which the workers, through a personal, free, direct, and secret vote, must have the opportunity to express their agreement or disagreement with the provisions of the contract at least once within the four years following its entry into force. This is derived from a commitment made in Annex 23 of the Treaty between Mexico, the United States, and Canada (T-MEC).
The Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare (MLSW) and the Federal Center for Labor Conciliation and Registration (hereinafter FCLCR), through an official statement, informed that the date for registering the legitimization consultation events expires on May 1, 2023, for which reason all collective bargaining agreements that have not registered a date to carry out the legitimization consultations before such date will be terminated. Likewise, collective bargaining agreements will be terminated if the consultations are not carried out before July 31, 2023 or if the majority of the workers reject the content of the CBA.
To initiate the consultation process, the union must give notice to the FCLCR, indicating the date, time, and place of the consultation. However, as of today, the FCLCR has reported 15,742 legitimized out of a total of 139,000 collective bargaining agreements.
It is important to emphasize that in the event that the CBA is terminated, companies may not reduce the wages, rights and benefits last established in the CCT, since the termination does not modify the relationship between the company and the worker; nor may the hiring or permanence of a worker be conditioned for being part of a particular union; It is also not possible to negotiate the salary or review the CBA with the union with which the CBA has been terminated, since such union will no longer have the representation of the workers, that is to say, the ownership of the CBA; therefore, the union may not call a strike or threaten to suspend work.
The union, however, may continue to carry out activities if it does not interfere with the work dynamics of the company. The employer, on the other hand, must negotiate in good faith a new CBA with the union that has the Representation Certificate.