Amount of foreign workers allowed to work in Chilean companies

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When addressing the role of foreigners in the Chilean workforce, we find the main belief that all companies have a limit of foreign workers who can work within it.

It’s important to clarify that the current chilean legislation on the matter, when regulating the number of foreign workers who can serve the same employer, indicates that 85% of their workers must be chilean, thus leaving space for 15% of foreign workers within the company.

It’s necessary to add, that this rule is only applicable to those employers who have more than 25 workers. That is, if a company has 10 workers it isn’t limited in terms of the number of foreign workers it can hire, so the 10 workers can all be foreigners.

On the other hand, if the company had 100 workers, only 15 could be foreigners.

Our Labor law gives us the rules to follow, and also gives us the exceptions. It is important to note that even if a company has a number greater than 25 workers, these exceptions will apply, counting as a Chilean worker those who, being foreigners, meet any of these following conditions:

1 .- The specialist technical staff will be excluded;

2 .-  A foreigner whose spouse or domestic partner or children are Chilean or who is widowed or widowed of a Chilean spouse shall be considered a Chilean citizen.

3 .- Foreigners residing for more than five years in the country will also be considered as Chileans, without taking into account any accidental absences.

Also, to calculate the number of workers of a company, the total of workers is considered within the national territory, not that of the different branches separately.

We conclude reminding that this information could be modified if any of the bills that have been presented on the matter move forward in congress. These projects vary in their scope, some seek the elimination of the distinction between Chileans and foreigners, others propose the decrease of the percentage of Chilean workers required, and others increase the exceptions of article 20 already indicated. Yet, so far, none of these projects has had major legislative impact or generated greater interest in its processing. Be confident that we will inform future modifications in our website.

Article written by Camila Diaz Olguín, attorney from Vivir en Chile.

© 2018 – Vivir en Chile
Do you want to use this article on your website, blog or e-journal? Of course you can, as long as you include this message in it. Vivir en Chile is a legal and accounting firm specialized in the incorporation of companies and individuals in Chile. We believe in open borders and global opportunities.


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