The labor reform in Colombia 2023, also known as “Labor for Change”, was filed on March 16 before the Congress of the Republic. The bill has 76 articles that seek to amend several articles of the Substantive Labor Code, Law 50 of 1990 (which introduces some reforms to the CST) and Law 789 of 2002 (which establishes rules to support employment and expand social protection and amends some articles of the CST). This is intended to provide more guarantees to workers, however, the employers’ association has expressed that this represents an increase in costs for them as employers.
Significant changes in Colombia’s labor reform 2023
- New limits daytime and nighttime work: the proposal is that daytime work should be between 6am and 6pm and nighttime work should be between 6pm and 6am. Currently, the night shift starts at 9 pm.
- Sunday and holiday surcharges: it is proposed to increase the surcharge from 75% to 100% of the regular salary.
- Term contracts fixed: They must be entered into in writing and must specify the temporary need to be met and the duration. The contract may be entered into for a period of less than or equal to 2 years and may be extended, but in no case shall this extension exceed 2 years. In case of dismissal without just cause cause, only only the compensation equivalent to the salaries corresponding to the time remaining to fulfill the time of the the time contracted. Under this assumption, the possibility of reimbursement is eliminated.
- Contracts for the provision of services or labor: These contracts may not be entered into for permanent and subordinate activities, i.e., they only apply to temporary projects that have a start and final delivery date. If it is extended indefinitely, there will be an employment relationship and the corresponding social benefits must be paid.
- Regulation of work in digital platforms: proposes that workers be bound by an employment contract so that they are guaranteed all their rights and the labor standards of dependent workers are applied.
- Compensation for dismissal without just cause: the minimum indemnity increases from 15 to 45 days’ salary in the case of term contracts. fixed or by work or labor. In the case of indefinite term contracts, the indemnity is 45 days of salary for the first year of services and 45 additional days on top of the initial 45 days for each subsequent year, regardless of whether the employee’s salary is higher or lower than 10 SMLMV.
- Guarantee of social security for migrants: regardless of the immigration status of the foreigner within the national territory, all labor rights must be guaranteed.
The above are some of the most relevant points of the labor reform. However, there are also modifications regarding collective rights, leaves and leaves of absence, labor outsourcing, among other aspects, which in general terms have generated many positive and negative comments from the different unions.