Country Information

The Oriental Republic of Uruguay is a small country located in the southern part of South America. Montevideo, the country’s largest city and capital, lies on the north shore of the Ra­o de la Plata. Its colonial architecture and the famous Punta del Este beach are major tourist attractions. It is a global exporter of agricultural goods and boasts an extensive renewable energy infrastructure. The government maintains a positive investment climate that is favorable for foreign investors. Uruguay has a stable legal system in which investors can freely transfer the capital and profits from their investments abroad. With over 3.5 million people, Uruguay has shown many benefits to expand.

Employment Contracts

Employment contracts in Uruguay may be either in a verbal or written. While there is no statutory obligation to execute an employment contract in writing, it is recommended. Many employment relationships also are governed by collective agreements.

Working Hours

In Uruguay, standard working hours for the industrial sector are fixed at 48 hours per week over six-days and eight hours a day. In the commercial sector, the limit is 44 hours a week and eight hours a day. Overtime hours generally are paid with 100% over the standard wage on regular days and 150% over the standard wage on non-working days such as holidays and Sundays. Overtime is limited to eight hours a week.

Sick Leave

Employees receive up to one year of leave for illness. Eligible employees receive benefits through Uruguay’s social security system, Banco de Previsión Social (BPS).

Maternity/Paternity Leave

Female employees receive 14 weeks of paid maternity leave. Up to six weeks of maternity leave can be taken before birth and the remaining eight weeks taken after birth. Father receive 13 days of paid paternity leave.

Compensation

Employees are entitled to a 13th month salary bonus, which must be paid in two parts distributed in June and December.

Vacation Leave

Employees are entitled to paid vacation leave of at least 20 days after one year of employment and receive an extra day of vacation leave after every four years of service.

Public Holidays

The following public holidays are observed in Uruguay:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Carnival Monday
  • Carnival Tuesday
  • Maundy Thursday
  • Good Friday
  • Landing of the 33 Patriots Day
  • Labor Day/May Day
  • Battle of Las Piedras
  • Jose Artigas’ Birthday
  • Constitution Day
  • Independence Day
  • Day of the Races
  • All Souls’ Day
  • Christmas Day
Health Insurance Benefits

The National Integrated Health System includes both the private sector and the public sector. Public health services are carried by the Administración de los Servicios de Salud del Estado (ASSE) or State Health Services Administration. In addition to the public health services, health services are also provided by Las Instituciones de Asistencia Médica Colectiva (IAMC) or Collective Medical Care Institutions, which are private organizations.

Employment / Termination / Severance

The rights and responsibilities for terminating an employment contract are generally detailed as part of an individual or collective agreement. This includes the process for dismissing an employee and any requisite notice period.Employers are not required to pay severance for breach of the employment contract but may be required in other circumstances. Severance is one month of the employee’s salary per year of service up to six months.

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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Partner with Atlas

Partnering with Atlas when expanding into Uruguay, 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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