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Leave in Chile

Holiday Entitlement in Chile

After one year of employment, employees are entitled to 15 working days (three weeks) of paid annual leave paid by the employer, based on the average pay of the three latest months (the calculation is inclusive of any monthly variants in pay, such as commission). At least 10 days of the 15 must be taken consecutively, while the remainder can be used as agreed by the employer and the employee.

Although it’s not mandatory, many tech companies choose to give employees 10 to 15 days of annual leave during their first year of employment, but annual leave beyond the statutory is not very common.
In the following regions of Chile, employees are entitled to a minimum of 20 working days off:

  • Región de Aysén
  • Región de Magallanes
  • Provincia de Palena

After ten years of employment, regardless of having changed employers, employees accrue one additional day off for every three years of work.
Holiday time can be accrued for up to two consecutive years, and employers may not pay employees in lieu of taking time off, except upon termination or resignation.

Bank holiday

There are 15 national holidays in Chile. If an employee works during a national holiday, they are entitled to a different day off instead within the next workweek. However, if the worked hours exceed the statutory maximum (45 hours weekly), the employee is also entitled to overtime pay at a rate of 150% of their regular pay. Workers excluded from the working hours limitation, such as managers and remote employees, are also entitled to a minimum of 150% of their regular pay if they work during a holiday, and such requirement should be reflected in their employment contracts.

Depending on how the holidays fall annually, the government may move some of them to Monday or Friday (whichever is closer). Regions of Chile may declare additional holidays or substitute one or more from the list below.

Chile 2021 Holiday Calendar
DateDayHoliday
1 JanSatNew Year's Day
15 AprFriGood Friday
16 AprSatEaster Saturday
1 MaySunLabour Day
21 MaySatNavy Day
21 JunTueNational Day of Indigenous Peoples
27 JunMonFeast of St Peter and St Paul
16 JulSatOur Lady of Mount Carmel
15 AugMonAssumption Day
18 SepSunIndependence Day
19 SepMonArmy Day
10 OctMonDay of the Race
31 OctMonReformation Day
1 NovTueAll Saints' Day
8 DecThuImmaculate Conception
25 DecSunChristmas Day

* These holidays are mandatory, and employees cannot be asked to work during them.

** These holidays move to Monday of the week they occur annually if they fall on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday; they move to the Monday of the following week if they fall on a Friday.

*** When these holidays fall on a Tuesday and Wednesday, they move to the previous Monday. When they fall on a Wednesday and Thursday, they move to the following Friday.

It is common for companies to give employees New Year’s Eve (31 December) as a shorter workday or a full day off.

Leave

Sick leave

There is no limit on how many days employees are entitled to have as sick leave, provided there is a licencia médica (doctor’s certificate) to confirm the need and length of the leave. The doctor’s note must be provided within two working days of being sick. The employer has three working days to forward the note to the health insurance institution.

Whether employees have public or private health insurance, it is the insurance that pays for the sick leave. However, if the sick leave lasts less than three days, the employee is not entitled to sick pay. From day 4 to day 10, employees are entitled to their regular remuneration. If the sick leave extends for more than ten days, the employee is entitled to sick pay inclusive of all working days since the start of being sick (inclusive of the first three days).

Employees on sick leave are protected from having their employment contract terminated.

Covid-19

Employees who test positive for COVID are entitled to full pay from the first day of being sick, for a maximum of ten days.
However, it must be evaluated whether the contagion occurred in a work situation or externally. If externally, the health institution is responsible for the treatment (Fonasa or Isapre). If it is occupational, the insurance and professional accident administrators are responsible for the treatment.

Maternity leave

Female employees are entitled to 18 weeks of maternity leave, 6 weeks before the child’s birth (prenatal rest is extended if the delivery doesn’t happen within the 6 weeks), and the remainder 12 weeks after the child is born (if the delivery occurs before the 33rd week of gestation, or if the child at birth weighs less than 1,500 grams, the postnatal rest is 18 weeks). The maternity leave is paid by the social security authorities, at the employee’s full salary.
If as a consequence of the delivery there is a disease proven with a certificate, which prevents returning to work for a period longer than postnatal rest, the duration may be extended. In the case of deliveries of two or more children, the postnatal rest period shall be increased by seven consecutive days for each child born after the second.
Mothers may choose to share their maternity leave with their partner (as long as both are employed) from the 7th week after the child’s birth. Employees benefit from additional job protection from the beginning of the pregnancy until one year after the maternity leave ends.

Breastfeeding break

Employees are entitled to a paid breastfeeding break of at least one hour daily until the child turns two years of age. This break may take one of the following forms, as agreed between the employer and the employee:

  1. At any time during the working day
  2. Dividing the break, at the request of the interested party, into two portions
  3. Postponing or advancing by half an hour, or an hour, the beginning or end of the working day

Employees cannot waive this break if they have children under the age of two.

Paternity leave

Male employees are entitled to five days of paternity leave upon the child’s birth, which must be used within the first month of the child’s birth. The leave is paid by the employer, at the employee’s normal salary.
Mothers may also choose to share some of their maternity and parental leave with the father, for a maximum of 6 weeks or 12 half-weeks paid by the social security authorities.

Adoption leave

Both parents are entitled to the same statutory leave as described under maternity leave and paternity leave. If the adopted child is older than six months of age, the maternity leave is limited to six weeks.

Parental leave

Following the end of the maternity leave, female employees are entitled to an additional 12 weeks of parental leave, paid by the social security authorities at the same rate as maternity leave.
The parental leave starts immediately after the end of the maternity leave. However, employees may choose to either take 12 full weeks off or to work part-time and have the leave for 18 weeks instead. (In this case, the parental leave pay is reduced to 50% after the 12th week, and the employer must pay the employee at least 50% of their regular salary.)

Mothers may choose to share their parental leave with the father of the child. In this case, the parental pay of the father is also paid by the social security authorities according to their salary.

Childcare leave

Female employees are entitled to ten days off annually if they have a child under the age of 18. The leave is paid as a regular workday by the employer, but the employee must make up for the time off at a later date.
This is a right of employees when the health of their child requires personal care because of a serious accident or a serious, acute, and life-threatening illness.

Bereavement leave

Employees whose partner passes away are entitled to seven days of bereavement leave (ten in case of their child), paid by the employer. If the employee loses a close family member, such as parents, grandparents, or an unborn child, they are entitled to three days of bereavement leave. Employees benefit from additional termination protection for one month after the death of a loved one.

Military service

Although military service is not mandatory in Chile, if an employee chooses to take part in it, their job must be secured for the duration of the training. If the employee is called to service for less than 30 days as reserve personnel, employers must keep paying the employee their regular wage.

Carer's leave

Parents with a child under the age of one dealing with serious illness can take a leave during the period prescribed by the health service. This right extends to the spouse or civil partner. If both parents are entitled, it would be the mother’s choice as to who would be entitled.

Employee (both the father and the mother) with a child older than 1 year and under 18 years, who has suffered from a serious accident or life-threatening illness, is entitled to a paid leave of absence for the number of hours equivalent to ten working days per year, distributed at the employee’s choice in full, partial, or combined days.
When the spouse, the civil partner, the father, or the mother of the employee are in a terminal state, the employee may be provided with ten working days of paid leave with the means of a medical certificate.
The leave is paid by the health insurance.

Marriage leave

Employees are entitled to five continuous working days of paid leave by their employer in case of marriage or civil union. The employees are free to choose when exactly they use up this time.

Medical exam leave

Employees who need to get general preventative exams, such as mammograms or prostate exams, done are entitled to half a day off a year, paid by the employer.

Vaccination

In the cases of public vaccination programs or campaigns for the control and prevention of communicable diseases, all employees are entitled to half a day’s leave for vaccination, paid by the employer.

This page was last updated on 
22 September, 2022,
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