On January 11, 2022, the Technical Council (the “Council”) of the Mexican Social Security Institute (“IMSS”) announced that the “COVID-19 Permit” process will be relaunched as a result of the heightened risk of infection caused by the Omicron variant.
The COVID-19 Permit provides employees with the possibility to obtain paid sick leave for up to seven business days without having to visit a medical unit. The purpose is to avoid symptomatic employees coming to the workplace and potentially transmitting the virus and damaging the company’s normal activities.
The “COVID-19 Permit Version 3.0” will establish that, through a digital application and by filling a questionnaire about symptoms, vaccination status and preexisting conditions, an employee may obtain the COVID-19 Permit and be granted paid sick leave up to seven days.
The Council also stated that working mothers who qualify for maternity leave will be able to file for such remotely through IMSS digital services, thus avoiding the risk of infection by visiting IMSS facilities in person.
The announcement requests employers to avoid requiring COVID-19 tests paid by the employee and provides that the employer should cover such costs.
Finally, the announcement asks employers to help employees who require assistance to complete the forms necessary to obtain the permit.
It is vital for employers to be in constant communication with employees and working mothers infected with COVID-19 so the company can obtain the paid sick leave permit and avoid paying double during the leave or apply non-justified discounts for not coming to the workplace.