Layoffs, salary reductions, delays and defaults in the payment of remuneration, perfect suspension of work and fixed-term contracts have been some of the effects of the pandemic on company finances. This situation, added to the adaptation of access to justice by virtuality, generated that the job demands in 2021 they will reach a record figure in the last four years.
In this regard, Aracelli Morales, associate of the Miranda & Amado firm, specified that from January to December 2021, a total of 76,130 labor processes were registered nationwide, 176% above the number of complaints registered in 2020 (27,589), and higher than the pre-pandemic years: 64,098 (2019) and 63,996 (2018).
What were the most recurrent labor demands?
According to data from the Statistical Sub-Management of the Judicial Power of Peru, the lawsuits with the highest incidence during the past year were related to the payment of social benefits (CTS, vacations, utilities, reimbursement of salaries, bonuses, among others). These processes went from 22,402 (2020) to 23,731 (2021).
Another frequent issue in the processes filed by workers with their employers is the distortion of temporary contracts.
“In general, the worker usually alleges that the position for which he was hired is permanent and does not respond to a temporary need. In these cases, he requests recognition of his indefinite-term employment relationship and, in the event of termination, reinstatement in employment. For this reason, it is important to review the existing temporary contracts or evaluate other legal figures that can be implemented alternatively.Morales said.
He indicated that the worker is not the only one who can file labor lawsuits; employers can also do it against the administrative institutions or against the workers. These cases are limited to contentious-administrative processes and/or for damages, respectively.
Pace of reconciliations
Although they are not going at the same rate as the lawsuits, the settlements during 2021 were also higher than those of the previous year. During said period, 2,365 labor processes were reconciled throughout the country versus 1,205 in 2020.
However, in 2019 and 2018 the number of reconciliations was higher than in 2021.
Regarding this aspect, the associate of the Miranda & Amado study commented that “conciliations are an opportunity to conclude the process by agreement of the parties, because it can be a solution formula more in line with their real interests. For this reason, I recommend that the parties, together with their respective lawyers, analyze the pros and cons in each specific case.”.
The judicial districts where more conciliations were carried out were those of La Libertad, Lima, Arequipa, Santa and Lima Este. These are also the judicial districts with the highest judicial burden.
“It stands out that La Libertad accumulates a greater number of conciliations than in Lima, despite the fact that the capital has the largest number of processes; from which the willingness of the parties and the courts to find alternative means of solving the labor process is deduced“, Held.