Country Information

The Republic of Peru is a South American country bordering the Pacific Ocean on the west and the Amazon forest on the eastern side with Brazil. Peru is the second largest Amazonian national territory, after Brazil. Lima, the capital of Peru and the largest city, overlooks the Pacific Ocean; it has more than 10 million people in the metro area. Spanish is the predominant language spoken in the country. Peru exports are textiles, copper, gold, zinc, chemicals, manufactures, services and fish meal; its major trade partners are the United States, China and Brazil.

Employment Contracts

An employment contract in Peru can be either for an indefinite or fixed term. A fixed-term contract must be in writing and specify the objective reason the parties are contracting for a fixed term, the duration of the contract and other conditions agreed by the parties. The duration of a fixed-term contract cannot exceed five years. There should be three copies of the contract: one for the employer, the employee and the Labor Ministry.

Special rules apply to employment contracts with foreign employees.

Working Hours

The standard work period is 48 hours a week and eight hours a day.

Sick Leave

Employees receive a year of paid sick leave. The first 20 days are paid by the employer, while sick leave beyond that and up to 11 months and 10 days are paid by social security. The employee, after one year, can apply for a disability pension if they are still not fit to work.

Maternity/Paternity Leave

Female employees receive 98 days of paid maternity leave, with 49 days before and after the birth. The employee can choose to take the rest partially or consecutively after the delivery and must notify the employer about the leave two months in advance. In the event of multiple births or a pregnancy-related complication, maternity leave can be extended by 30 days. Female employees also receive one hour to breastfeed until the child is one year’s old. To qualify for maternity benefits, the employee must have worked for three consecutive or four non-consecutive months during the six months prior to the leave. Employees also receive 30 days of paid adoption leave if they are adopting a child under the age of 12. The adoptive parents must be married, and the leave is only available to the mother. A male employee is entitled to 10 days of paternity leave. For multiple deliveries or premature birth, it is extended to 20 consecutive days.


The minimum wage is set by the Ministry of Labor and Employment Promotion decree. Employees receive two bonuses. The first is paid at the end of July around Peru’s Independence Day and the other is paid during Christmas. Each bonus payment is equal to the monthly salary of the employee. Employees also receive an extra percentage of the statutory bonus paid at the same time. The percentage of the bonus may vary depending on the industry. Employers with more than 20 employees must pay a percentage of their annual pre-tax profits to the employees. Employees with one child or more under the age of 18 or between the age of 18 up to 24, and pursuing a higher education degree, receive an additional monthly payment, which is a percentage of the minimum monthly wage.

Vacation Leave

In addition to public holidays, employees receive 30 days of paid annual leave. The first 15 days may be divided into two periods of at least seven and eight days. The remainder must be taken in at least one-day increments. The vacation leave period cannot overlap with maternity leave or disability leave. If the employee does not get the vacation period during the year, the employer must pay one month’s salary for the vacation, plus another month’s salary as an indemnity. Domestic workers receive 15 days of annual leave.

Public Holidays

Peru observes the following public holidays:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Maundy Thursday
  • Good Friday
  • Labor Day
  • Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul
  • Independence Day
  • Santa Rosa de Lima
  • Battle of Angamos
  • All Saints Day
  • Immaculate Conception
  • Christmas
Health Insurance Benefits

Employed individuals are eligible to receive healthcare benefits through Peru’s social security system. The program, called El Seguro Social en Salud (EsSalud), is funded through payroll tax contributions. Private insurance is also available (ESP).

Employment / Termination / Severance

Termination of employment can occur during the probation period, at the end of the contract term, by mutual consent, by the employer (with or without cause) or by the employee. The probation period in Peru cannot exceed three months for non-skilled employees, six months for skilled employees and one year for managerial positions.After the probation period, an employer must either have a valid reason (just cause) to terminate an employee or provide notice and pay severance.

Local Laws & Regulations

We understand that local laws and regulations change and sourcing an accurate reference guide is not easy. Our data is researched and verified by our team of local international Employment Attorneys, HR and Benefit Professionals and Tax Accountants through our Atlas team and consultants, to ensure information up-to-date and accurate.

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Partnering with Atlas when expanding into Peru, can dramatically reduce the standard brick and mortar processes of doing business in foreign markets and allow you to focus on what you do best, growing your company! To discover more about how Atlas can simplify your ability to expand globally, please feel free to contact us.
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