Comprehensive Guide to Leaves in Mexico

The nature of work is fast changing. The world is moving from conventional/localized work roles to remote ones that offer the freedom to work from home. This changing nature of work has allowed employers to work with candidates in other states and foreign countries alike. 

However, while this change has been super beneficial for employees who can now choose to relocate, and employers can now choose to cast a wider net farther than their immediate communities, this new working mode has also introduced a unique perspective to labor laws.

This compilation will highlight the core leave policies you should know as an employer seeking to attract talent in Mexico and the LatAm region. This leave policy also includes maternity leave and all of maternity protection in Mexico. 

Holiday Leave in Mexico

The federal labor law efficiently protects employees in Mexico, and foreign employers must abide by all the approved federal labour laws and regulations. These laws guarantee employees time off in Mexico. A specified number of days is designed to align with their time at the company. 

Holiday Entitlement

In Mexico, there are 7 public holidays and seven bank holidays; although some are not official, they are still observed and must be highlighted in the work culture.  However, personal agreements may be made with prospective employees on the number of observable holidays. However, Mexican employees are entitled to vacation time. 

After the employee has worked with the company for four years and reached 12 days of the yearly vacation time, they get an additional two days of leave per every five years of service. In addition to this, Mexican employees are entitled to a vacation bonus that is 25% higher than the standard pay rate. 

Types of Leave in Mexico

There are different types of leave in Mexico. The Mexican leave law also provides maternity protection for employees under its cover. In this section, we shall be comprehensively discussing maternity rights and benefits in Mexico. 

Maternity Leave

New mothers in Mexico have maternity rights in Mexico. They are also afforded certain maternity benefits in the country. New Mothers are entitled to at least 12 weeks of maternity leave in Mexico. This leave period starts about six weeks before the medically confirmed due date. 

The adoption case is also fully catered for, as a new mother gets six weeks of maternity leave to bond with her child, starting from the day of the adoption. 

Maternity Leave Regulations and Rights

Maternity rights are aptly covered under Mexican labor laws, and Mexico is not alone. The International Labour Organization states that over 120 countries provide maternity leave and other commensurate benefits to new mothers. In Mexico, Maternity leave covers all female workers covered by the Mexican Social Security System (IMSS). Every employee covered by the IMSS is entitled to different perks. 

These perks or benefits are covered by a portion of their salaries withheld by an employer and contributed to the IMSS. Regarding regulations, the concerned mother must submit a medical certificate from a registered medical facility; as mentioned earlier, the total maternity leave period is 12 weeks. Four to six weeks before the expected due date, the female worker receives a salary equivalent to 100% of their usual wage, which is covered by both the employer and the IMSS. 

Extending Maternity Leave Options

Pregnancy, childbirth, and all the issues surrounding it can sometimes be unpredictable, and Mexican labor laws also recognize this. Hence, it has stipulations for when maternity leave needs to be extended. Maternity leave can be extended for up to 8 weeks, during which the new mother must rest according to her physician’s orders. 

In the case of the newborn requiring extra hospital care or born with a form of disability, Mexico’s leave policies allow for up to 8 weeks of leave after birth. But in this case, a medical certificate must be submitted to the employer, and the employer is expected to pay the concerned mother at least 50% of their salary in the worst-case scenario.

It is also possible for an expectant mother to transfer up to four weeks of her pre-natal leave to the post-natal period if they think they need more rest. However, in this case, the employer must be duly notified with a signed certificate from a professional approved by the IMSS. 

Return to Work Policies for Mothers

One of the benefits of Maternity leave is highlighted when it is time for the new mother to return to work. According to Mexican Leave laws, when mothers return to work with a newborn, they can request two additional half-hour work breaks up to six weeks after resumption. 

The onus is on the employer to provide a safe environment to do this, and they must reduce their total work hours by an hour or two for six weeks in addition to the half-hour breaks they take to care for the newborn. 

Maternity Leave for Adoptive Mothers

Adoptive mothers are not left out under the guidelines for maternity leave in Mexico. If a female employee adopts a child, she is entitled to at least six weeks of maternity leave after getting her child. This period can also be extended if the child requires additional hospital care or is born with any form of disability. 

This also depends on presenting a medical certificate to the employer. Remuneration is also based on what is negotiated and agreed upon by the two parties involved. The employer and the employee in this case. 

Sick Leave

An employee is entitled to sick leave, depending on the type of illness or the degree of disability involved. During this period, the IMSS and not the employer pay the employee. The sickness pay is 60% of the salary registered before the IMSS at the beginning of the disability from the fourth day till the end of 52 weeks. This period may also be extended by up to 26 weeks. 

Paternity Leave

Like maternal leave, paternity leave is regulated and effectively addressed under federal labor and social security laws. Male workers are only entitled to take five days off work on the occasion of the birth or adoption of their child. The male workers are entitled to 100% of their salary during this period. 

Paternity Leave Rights and Duration

Male employees in Mexico are entitled to five working days of fully paid paternity leave per child. Still, if the birth is complicated or the mother of the child passes away, the father is entitled to an additional leave period. Same-sex marriages are also eligible for the same perks. 

Parental Leave

In 2019, the Mexican government implemented care leave after labor and social security laws were revised to allow willing individuals to take parental leave to allow parents to care for children who have been diagnosed and are under the age of 16.

Carer’s Leave

The IMSS grants care leaves to employed parents and their children. IMSS grants this kind of leave to working parents insured under the program and their children. 

To qualify for this leave, the child’s medical carer must give official orders, treatment periods, or hospitalization.

Parental leave covers treatments for pain relief and advanced cancer care. The care leave ends when the child no longer requires critical care, the child turns 16 years old, a new employer hires the parent, or death occurs. 

Bereavement Leave

No mandatory laws cover the employee in the case of bereavement. If the employee needs paid time off for a bereavement leave of absence, the employer can grant the leave. 

Work-Related Injury Leave

The IMSS medical services is in full charge of occupational injuries, which refers to any accident or disease from the course of work. The IMSS is tasked with paying the employee from the beginning of the disability to the end of 52 weeks as appropriately determined by the IMSS medical services. 

Industrial Accident Leave

This is also the same for industrial accidents, such as sudden disturbance, organic injury, or death during employment. The employee is entitled to 100% of the salary registered before IMSS at the beginning of the disability from day one to the end of 52 weeks, all determined by IMSS medical services. 

Occupational Disease Leave

They are pathological conditions that arise due to the work environment where the employee is mandated to carry out services or originally arising from the services being rendered. When an occupational disease occurs, the pension is calculated using the average salary based on the insured’s contribution during the last 52 weeks. If the disability is of a more permanent partial, greater than 50%, the insured will get a pension granted by the insurance institution of the insured’s choice. 

Non-occupational Disease Leave

In the case of non-occupational disease, the IMSS is responsible for providing the insured with the necessary medical, pharmaceutical, surgical, and hospital assistance from the onset of the illness and for 52 weeks while undergoing treatment for the same condition. 

Business Creation Leave

There is no provision for a business creation leave; if an employee needs it, it is left to the employer’s discretion. 

Adoption Leave

This has been explained earlier: in the case of adopting an infant, female employees are entitled to a six-week paid leave following the day they receive the infant, and male employees get a paid leave of five days. 

Sabbatical Leave – Teachers

Teaching personnel in Mexico can request a sabbatical year every six years from when they were confirmed as tutors in line with employer provisions. In the sabbatical year, they are separated from teaching and entitled to consistent pay; in that time, they get to conduct research, and students generally contribute to the academic environment. 

Marriage Leave

There are no stipulations for marriage leave periods; if an employee needs a marriage leave, it can be negotiated with the employee, who can grant such leave, but it is mostly unpaid.  

Managing Parental Leaves Effectively 

Globy is a solid interface between your company and employee. Apart from helping you reach your ideal candidates in Mexico and the LatAm region, vetting and onboarding them efficiently is also concerned with streamlining the hiring process to cover possible workforce gaps effectively while also achieving inclusion and gender balance in the process. 


What are the holiday leave entitlements for employees in Mexico?

Full-time employees in Mexico are entitled to at least six days of paid time off each year. This number increases based on the number of years spent with the company. 

How many public holidays are there in Mexico, and what are they?

Mexico has about 7 public holidays, some of which are observed and are generally considered work-free days. 

What are the different types of leave available to employees in Mexico?

About 12-15 types of leave are available to employees in Mexico. Some of these leaves are paid, while some are left to the employer’s discretion.

How is sick leave managed and allocated in Mexico?

The IMSS handles sick leave times or periods, and they always have to interact directly with your employer to determine how sick leaves are managed in Mexico. 

What are the specific regulations for maternity leave in Mexico?

The IMSS handles and interacts with new and expectant mothers who are also employees. A physician always manages and gives relevant instructions and certifies the concerned individual’s health as the maternity leave proceeds in Mexico.