Minimum Wage in Mexico – Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a separate legislation relating to minimum wages in Mexico?

There is no specific law on minimum wages in Mexico. However, in the Constitution, Article 123, section VI, is the legal basis for the general minimum wage. It is primarily the Federal Labour Act which contains the regulation of minimum wages. Items 90 to 97 of the Act contain the main characteristics of minimum wage.

Do one or more minimum wages exist that is/are determined by law?

The National Minimum Wage Commission established 59 categories of occupational minimum wages and 2 geographic areas.

At what level are minimum wages determined at?

Section VI of Article 123 of the Constitution states: “The General Minimum wages should be sufficient to meet the normal requirements of a householder in the material, social and cultural, and to provide compulsory education of children".

On what basis is minimum wage calculated?

Under Article 83 of the Federal Labour Law, wages should be fixed per unit time per unit of work, commission, fee or otherwise price. However, minimum wages in Mexico are determined on a daily basis.

In case of weekly/monthly minimum age, are they based on any fixed number of hours?

The Federal Labour Law, Article 90, states that the minimum wage is the minimum amount to be paid in cash for services provided in a day's work and Article 61 defines the maximum length of the working day is 8 hours during the day and night shifts 7 for 7 and a half for mixed days. Also in Article 85 of the Labour Act, the wage paid to a worker (never less than the minimum wage) should be based on a normal working day of 8 or 7.5 hours (when nocturnal).

Are governmental bodies, employer and/or trade union representatives involved in minimum wages setting?

The third paragraph of Section VI of Article 123 of the Mexican Constitution and Article 94 of the Federal Labour Act states that “Minimum wages are established by a committee of representatives of workers, employers and government National Commission." Also in the article 94 of the Federal Labour Act provides that the National Commission to set minimum wages should form committees as needed to carry out their duties. The organization representing employers is COPARMEX and unions are grouped in the CTM and CROC, which are involved in this committee.

How are upratings (adjustments) of minimum wages decided upon?

Section VI of Article 123 of the Constitution states: “Minimum wages are established by a committee of representatives of workers, employers and government National Commission " and shall provide for salary surveys. The Federal Labour Act, under Title III, Chapter VI specifies that the entire procedure is carried out for the revision of minimum wages.

Which are the components of minimum wage in your country?

The legal minimum wage declared by the Mexican government has one fixed component.

How frequently is the fixed component of minimum wage updated?

Every year in the month of December is set by the National Commission on Minimum Wages and the new value will take effect from 1 January of the following year.

What is/are the yardstick/s on which minimum wage upratings are based?

Under Article 561 (III) and 562, the level of the minimum wage also depends of the cost of living for family, labour market conditions and payment structure. In extreme cases such as severe crises, it can be updated again.

What is National Poverty line?

Click here to know the national poverty line in context with Minimum Wage, living wages and actual wages. Select the currency (Euro or national currency) to know national poverty line.

What is the incidence of minimum wages(s) in the national labour force (wage earners only)?

According to the INEGI, to January 2014, 15 percent of the economically active population in the country (6.7 million Mexicans) receive or earn minimum wage, and 4.1 million Mexicans receive incomes below the minimum wage.

How is minimum wages compliance regulated?

Title 11, Chapters X to XIII, the Federal Labour Law establishes the obligation of the Labour Inspector monitor compliance with labour standards. According to the Federal Labour Act is an allocation of the Ministry of Labour and Federal and local Boards of Conciliation and Arbitration, who have to protect the enforcement of labour law.

Which legal sanctions can be applied in compliance is lacking?

Article 1004 of the Federal Labour Act provides for fines and imprisonment for violation of wage standards, depending on the amount or omission.

Are employer and/or trade union representatives involved in compliance procedures?

The Conciliation and Arbitration are responsible for guiding the negotiations between employers and workers when there is a disagreement.

To whom/Where can individuals complain, if they think they are earning less than minimum wage?

Under Article 540 (III) of the Federal Labour Law, the labour inspector’s responsibility to inform the authorities about violations of labour standards. According to the Act, it is the obligation of the Conciliation and Arbitration to resolve disputes. There is also a National Commission for the Defence of reference to protect the minimum wage, whose responsibility is to monitor and enforce laws and programs that protect the wages. There is also the Federal Ombudsman Labour ( PROFEDET ) is a decentralized body of the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare ( STPyS ), whose mission is to advise and, if necessary, perform for free, and propose solutions workers and employers to reach agreement.