Littler Global Guide - Colombia - Q3 2023

Browse through brief employment and labor law updates from around the globe. Contact a Littler attorney for more information or view our global locations.

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Workplace Lactation Law

New Legislation Enacted

Author: Juan José Cataño, Associate – Godoy Córdoba | Littler

Law 2306 of 2023, enacted on July 27, 2023, seeks to “protect maternity and promote the creation of safe spaces for breastfeeding.” Under this law, companies must grant two 30-minute breaks during the day for breastfeeding during the child’s first six months. After this period, the employer must grant a single 30-minute break for breastfeeding during the day. This law also promotes the creation of spaces dedicated to breastfeeding and provides different incentives for the creation and promotion of such spaces.

Right to Disconnect of Employees in Positions of Trust

New Order or Decree

Author: Juan José Cataño, Associate – Godoy Córdoba | Littler

Law 2191 of 2022, known as the “Right to Disconnect Law,” grants employees the right not to engage in work-related activities outside work hours. A provision under the law specifically excludes employees in positions of trust or executive or managerial roles who are exempt from the weekly work hour limit.

In Ruling C-331 of 2023, Colombia´s Constitutional Court declared the right to disconnect from work to be a human right that applies to employees in these types of roles. Although these employees are not subject to the weekly work hour limit, they are entitled to rest, and the employer’s power over their employees is not unlimited. Accordingly, employers must guarantee these employees the right to disconnect and employers’ contact with them outside work hours must be guided by a criteria of necessity and proportionality, according to each specific role.

Gradual Reduction of Weekly Working Hours, Effective in July 2023


Author: Gabriela Pacheco, Associate – Godoy Córdoba | Littler

Law 2101 of 2021, which became effective on July 15, 2023, mandates the gradual reduction of weekly working hours from 48 to 42 over a period of five years. The first reduction is of one hour for year 2023. Accordingly, the maximum amount of weekly working hours for the period between July 15, 2023, and July 15, 2024, is 47 hours.

New Labor Reform is Presented to Congress by the Government


Author: Juan José Cataño, Associate – Godoy Córdoba | Littler

The Colombian Government presented Congress with a set of proposals to reform the Labor Code. Important initiatives included in the proposals are as follows:

  • As a general rule, employment contracts must be for an indefinite term, and the duration of fixed-term contracts must be proportional to the employer’s temporary needs.
  • Apprenticeships must require a special type of work contract, and host companies must be obligated to contribute to the social security system in such cases.
  • In cases where employees might be protected under the reinforced job stability laws, termination of their contract must be approved by an administrative or judicial authority.
  • Disciplinary procedures within companies must have a minimum duration of five workdays and a maximum of 30 workdays.
  • The cost of terminating an employee’s contract should vary and increase based on the employee’s years of service (e.g., whether the employee has been working in the company for up to one year, one to five years, five to ten years, and ten years and beyond).
  • Hours worked between 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m will be considered daytime hours.
  • The paternity leave will expand to 12 weeks as of 2026.
  • “Essential services” employees can strike as long as a minimum service is provided.
  • Union workers must be granted the necessary paid leaves to participate in “union activities.”

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.