The Mexican Social Security Institute implements the strategy to consider the contagion of Covid-19 by employees as a “work /occupational risk.”
On January 8, 2021, the “Agreement of the Technical Council of the Mexican Social Security Institute ACDO.AS2.HCT.151220 /340.P.DPES” was published in the Federal Official Gazette. In it, the Directorate of Economic and Social Benefits of the Mexican Social Security Institute (“IMSS”) is authorized to implement a proactive ruling strategy for the treatment of COVID-19.
The above, based on the Federal Executive Order that declares extraordinary actions in general health matters to combat COVID-19, as well as the declaration of health emergency issued by the Mexican General Health Council.
The strategy will allow to consider as a “work/occupational risk”, any event of infection or death by any employee, or any effects of illness, caused by COVID-19 (work/occupational disease), during the period of the health emergency. This will apply until the health emergency ends.
This has several labor/tax implications for both the employees and employers. For employers, it could “affect” the social security premium, and, even, increase premium paid in the previous year by up to 1%.
IMSS should soon announce the details of the “proactive ruling strategy”, which shall include the procedure/actions to be followed by IMSS.
We recommend that, until then, companies document in advance any of their COVID-19 cases (and the consequences that may derive from the same), since this, most likely, will be classified as “work/occupational risk”, and not a “common/ general illness”.
If they are considered “work/occupational risks”, we will need to analyze the appropriate legal actions that may be taken.
Key points to be considered by companies:
- Identify and properly document cases of employees infected by COVID-19 as of the declaration of the health emergency in Mexico.
- Document the implementation of sanitary measures in the workspace ordered by Mexico’s Federal Government.
- Be on alert of any action rated by IMSS as a “work / occupational risks”, deriving from any cases of infection of COVID-19, and, where appropriate, evaluate its legal challenge.
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