The Ordinary and Extraordinary Labor Inspections are regulated by the Federal Labor Law in articles 540 to 550, the General Regulation of Labor Inspection and Sanctions Enforcement and the Federal Law of Administrative Procedure. Its main purpose is to monitor compliance with labor standards to ensure the relationships’ harmony between workers and employers.
The selection of the companies to be supervised is through a random system, or due to the file of a complaint or denunciation.
These inspections are carried out in the companies’ work centers in days and working hours, however, different days and times may be enabled if considered necessary.
The inspections are carried out by a Labor Inspector, who will inform the employer, or its representatives and the workers, about the scope and effects of such inspection, for which the employers must grant all kinds of facilities, supports, and aids, including those of administrative kinds, such as access to a computer, internet, stationery, printer and physical space for the relief of the Inspection.
A detailed report will be made from every inspection, with the intervention of the employer or its representative, as well as the workers, in the presence of two witnesses proposed by the employer, or appointed by the Labor Inspector, if it, had denied to propose them.
They will be carried out with prior summons to be delivered to the Work Centers at least 24 hours in advance of the date they will be made, specifying the employer’s name, address of the Work Center, date and time in which the procedure will be performed, the type of Inspection, the number and date of the corresponding Inspection order, attached with a list of documents to be exhibited by the employer, the aspects to be reviewed and the legal provisions on which they are based.
The various ordinary inspections are:
- Initial: Those that are made for the first time to the Work Centers, or by extension or modification of these;
- Periodic: Carried out with twelve-month intervals, which may be extended or decreased according to the results evaluation of previous inspections.
- Verification: They are carried out when it is required to verify the compliance of the measures ordered previously by the Labor Authorities in matters of Safety and Health at Work.
Practiced by the Labor Inspectors without a previous summons, in order to satisfy their primary objective of immediately detecting the situation that prevails in the inspected Work Center and will proceed in the following cases:
- When it is known that there is a Danger or Imminent Risk or when they receive complaints by any means or form of possible violations to labor legislation;
- When by any means the authority knows of probable breaches to labor standards;
- When by reviewing the documentation submitted for any effect, they realize of possible irregularities attributable to the employer or that the employer was falsely acting;
- When there is knowledge of accidents occurring in the Work Centers;
- When, while the performance of a prior Inspection or in the filing of documents before the Labor Authority, the employer or their representatives provide false information or conduct themselves with intent, bad faith or violence;
- When inspection records or documents are detected that do not meet the requirements established in the applicable legal provisions, or in those that give rise to elements to presume that the Labor Inspector engaged in irregular conduct and,
- When it is verified that the Work Centers have suspended their work, due to a sanitary contingency statement, issued by the corresponding authority.
BASIC CONCEPTS ABOUT INSPECTIONS
At the beginning of the Inspections, the Labor Inspector shall deliver to the employer or its representative or to the person with whom the diligence is carried out, the original of the respective written order, with an autograph signature of the public servant authorized to do so, as well as a guide containing the main rights and obligations of the inspected.
Said Inspection orders shall specify the Work Center to be inspected, its location, the objective and scope of the diligence, its legal basis, as well as the telephone numbers to which the employer may communicate in order to verify the data of the corresponding order; the Labor Inspector must show a valid ID with a photograph, issued by the competent authority that accredits it to perform said task. The Labor Inspectors’ credentials must contain, clearly and visibly, the following legend: “This credential does not authorize its bearer to carry out any Inspection, without the corresponding order”.
If during the Inspection it is detected that the documentation available at the Work Center disproves the previously reported violations or proves compliance with the obligations contained in the Law, its regulations, the Official Mexican Standards, and other provisions, the Inspector must establish that he had them in sight, making transcripts and quotations in the minutes, and will add copies of such documentation, which will be signed by the employer or its representative.
Before concluding the issuance of the corresponding report, the Labor Inspector will allow the persons who have intervened in the diligence to review the minutes, so that they can make the observations or offer the evidence that corresponds by right.
Likewise, he must inform the employer or its representative about the right he has to make observations and offer evidence related to the facts contained in it; or use such right in writing, within the term of five days following the date on that the respective minutes have been issued. Likewise, the workers’ representatives and those who have intervened in the diligence may express what is appropriate to their rights, and the Labor Inspector must record said statements in the contents of the inspection report.
The Labor Authority will be subject to the applicable provisions of the law that regulates the applicable administrative procedure and, when it is appropriate, those of the regulation on Occupational Health and Safety, those of the Sixth Title of the Federal Law on Metrology, and Standardization, or else, to the provisions of the Alternative Inspection Mechanisms, taking into consideration:
- The intentional nature or not of the act or omission constituting the infraction;
- The severity of the infraction;
- The damages that may have occurred or may occur;
- The offender’s economic capacity, and
- The offender’s recidivism.
The resolutions that put an end to the administrative procedure for the sanctions enforcement may be challenged in the terms established by the laws that regulate the administrative procedure that may be applicable.
The Labor Inspections usually arrive without previous warning to the companies, this unties panic and uncertainty; since the fines imposed by the Department of Labor and Social Security are economically high.
The reason why, it is highly recommended to comply with the regulations, Official Mexican Standards and other provisions provided by the Federal Labor Law.