Mexico: INFONAVIT Implements Support Measures For Employers And Employees Located In The Various Mexican States Impacted By The Recent Earthquakes

Co-Authored by Joaquin Junco

The INFONAVIT announced the implementation of support measures for employers and employees located in the states of Oaxaca, Chiapas, Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala, and/or Mexico City, which are areas declared to be in a state of disaster due to the September 8 and 19, 2017 earthquakes. The "Instituto del Fondo Nacional de la Vivienda para los Trabajadores" (INFONAVIT) is the federal authority that requires employers in Mexico to withhold a percentage of an employee's salary to fund the employee's housing benefits.

The support measures established by the INFONAVIT fall under five categories. As noted, the relief measures may vary by municipality:

  1. Employers' withholding and credit amortization obligation:

    • During September, October, November and December of 2017, employers located in the affected municipalities of Oaxaca, Chiapas, Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala and/or Mexico City, will not be obligated to withhold employees' housing credit payments and remit them to the INFONAVIT. Employers that fail to meet their withholding and credit amortization obligation during this period will not incur in any related liability. Employers' withholding obligation will be reinstated in January 2018.
  2. Employers' tax-related matters:

    • Until October 31, 2017, employers in the states of Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala, Oaxaca, Chiapas and/or Mexico City will not be subject to debt verification actions, except for cases that may impact the tax interest.
    • All tax actions undertaken by the Institute (including audits of bank accounts and cash receipts) will be suspended, to resume on November 1, 2017.
  3. Employers' late payments:

    • For employers in the affected municipalities of Oaxaca, Chiapas Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala, and/or Mexico City, the deadline to receive payments for the 5th and 6th bimonthly periods for 2017 is extended. The 5th bimonthly period can be paid no later than January 17, 2018, and the deadline for the 6th bimonthly period is extended until March 19, 2018. Such payments can be made in monthly installments, without surcharges, fines or the need to provide warranty pursuant to the current program to help bring employers up-to-date on their accounts.
    • For employers in the affected municipalities of Oaxaca and/or Chiapas, any surcharges or fines generated for late payments for the 5th and 6th bimonthly periods of 2017 are forgiven.
  4. Insurance against damages for employees in the affected municipalities of Oaxaca, Chiapas, Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala and/or Mexico City, holding an INFONAVIT credit who prove damage to their homes:

    • All housing that serves as guarantee for INFONAVIT credits is insured against damages.
    • In cases where the credit has not been paid timely, INFONAVIT will inspect and evaluate the damages to the home. Payments for property damage will be made once the employee has executed an agreement to normalize payments.
    • The property damage insurance will cover damages and losses caused to the home's interior, anywhere from $4,000.00 to $10,000.00 Mexican pesos, depending on the damage.
  5. Extension for Employees in the states of Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala, and/or Mexico City:
    • Employees with a housing credit should visit the INFONAVIT to request support before November 30, 2017.
    • Special extension, from 4 to 6 months without interest, will be provided to individuals with a housing credit who are not currently employed.
    • If after such extensions employees cannot continue making payments, they should visit the regional INFONAVIT office to learn of any other alternative for resolution.

      Extension for employees in the states of Oaxaca and/or Chiapas:
    • Employees who are members of the regular or special plans receive a special extension for the payment of the 5th and 6th bimonthly periods of 2017.
    • To receive this special support and related benefits, employees must visit the regional INFONAVIT office in person.
    • If employees cannot continue making payments after the 5th and 6th bimonthly periods conclude, they should visit the regional INFONAVIT office to learn of any other alternative for resolution.

Companies located in the states of Puebla, Guerrero, Morelos, Tlaxcala, and/or Mexico City in localities declared to be in a state of natural disaster may avail themselves of the above-mentioned support measures by contacting the INFONAVIT to file an application for such support.

Companies located in the states of Oaxaca and/or Chiapas in localities declared to be in a state of natural disaster may avail themselves of the above-mentioned support measures, without the need to file an application.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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