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Benefits in Chile

Mandatory Benefits

Legal gratification

In Chile, it is mandatory that companies with profits provide all employees with a statutory bonus annually in addition to the employee’s base salary. There are two methods that employers can choose to apply regarding the gratification:

  1. Divide 30% of the total net income of the company among all the employees, proportionate to their income.
  2. Pay the employee 25% of wages earned during the year, regardless of the total net income obtained by the company. This bonus is capped at 4.75 times of Minimum Monthly Income (IMM). The IMM to be considered is the one in force as of December 31 of the respective commercial year. Most employers opt for this option. Companies may also lower the employee’s base salary stated in the work contract to compensate for the addition of the legal gratification (as a way not to increase the total costs for the employer). However, if the base salary is already agreed on in the employment contract, it cannot be lowered without the employee’s consent.

Workers compensation insurance

Every company must contribute to the insurance to fund the risk of the employment activity. The amount of contribution borne by the company varies according to the level of risk of the activity, with a maximum rate of 3.4% of the employee’s salary.

In industries considered to be heavy work, where the level of accident risk is high, there may be an additional contribution paid by both employers and employees of 3% of the employees’ salary. This is applicable to workers who work in jobs that accelerate their physical, intellectual, or psychological wear and tear, causing early aging, even if they do not generate an occupational disease.

Covid individual health insurance

Not mandatory for remote workers.

Companies must provide a compulsory individual health insurance associated with COVID-19 for employees carrying out work completely or partially in person. They should also implement an occupational health safety protocol that must include at minimum daily temperature testing, safe physical distancing measures, water and soap availability, sanitization, etc. Until the company has put such a protocol in place, employees cannot resume in-person work activities. It’s expected that this legislation will be in place as long as there is health emergency.

The insurance must cover expenses related to hospitalization, rehabilitation, and death after a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Employers must purchase the COVID-19 insurance within ten days from the day employees are starting employment or moving to in-person operations.

The insurance policy is for 12 months initially and should be renewed if following that the COVID-19 health emergency is still in force. The insurance premium is paid as a one-off instalment for a maximum of UF 0.42 (plus VAT) per employee per year.

Employers who do not purchase this insurance face fines and may also be ordered to close their physical premises until they comply. Employees that get infected with COVID-19 can bring legal action for damages and compensation against employers that did not comply with the new obligations. In addition, employers will also have to pay anything that would have been covered under the COVID-19 policy.

Non-Mandatory Benefits

Hardware

Most tech companies give employees the option of choosing their hardware.

First year annual leave

In Chile, employees are not entitled to annual leave during the first year of employment. However, many companies g

Flexible work

More and more tech companies are adhering to more flexible work environments, which may include (1) allowing employees to work from home full time or (2) a hybrid model with two to three days of working from home and the rest from the office. Schedule flexibility is also becoming more common, with some employers enforcing core hours and allowing employees to choose when to work the remainder of their hours, or giving employees complete control of their work schedule.

Education and training

Many tech companies provide employees with a yearly budget (up to CLP 9,000,000) to be spent on their careers — to further their studies and to attend conferences, courses, and other learning activities — with some covering 50% to 100% of the cost of a post-graduate course.

Private health insurance

Even though Chile provides its citizens with free healthcare, it is common for employers in the tech industry to offer private health insurance to their employees, paid by the company (usually up to CLP 100,000 monthly). Many companies go beyond basic health insurance and include dental and vision care as well.

Stock options

Many startups allocate stock options to their early-joiner employees.

Public transportation allowance

A monthly commuting allowance is a common benefit that offers a tax-advantaged compensation to the employees who commute to work. Transportation stipends are non-taxable.

Yearly pay rise

It is common for employers to review their employees’ work yearly and to provide pay raises or bonuses based on their performance.

Aguinaldos

Aguinaldos are similar to 13th month payments. Even though it is not mandatory for private companies to provide employees with this additional pay, many companies break this bonus into two and give it out twice a year, usually during Chile’s Independence Day (18 September) and at Christmas time. The amount can be stipulated by the company and change yearly and also from employee to employee. However, companies should be careful, as aguinaldos that are delivered systematically may become acquired rights of the employee.

Childcare allowance

Depending on the role of the employee, some companies cover the school tuition of that employee’s children partially or fully or give childcare allowances.

Housing

Depending on the role of the employee, some companies cover that employee’s housing partially or fully.

Home workstation

Many companies provide their remote employees with the equipment to create an ergonomic workstation, including dock stations, headsets, and a desk with a chair.

Meal vouchers

Some employers offer ticket restaurante to their employees who work from the office, which is a non-taxable fringe benefit in Chile.

Supplementary pension

The national social security funds the pension system. However, the contributions are mandatory for employees only. Some employers choose to make a contribution into the employee’s pension fund, usually 1% to 3% of the employee’s salary. The benefit is non-taxable and can be withdrawn only upon retirement.

Life insurance

Some companies provide life insurance (with premiums being around CLP 50,000 monthly) or a cash bonus equivalent to a life insurance, usually at the amount of two annual salaries, passed on to the next of kin of the employee or in the case of a long-term disability or dismemberment.

This page was last updated on 
22 September, 2022,
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