Mexico: Subcontracting of Personnel (Outsourcing)

New Guidelines for specialized services registration

In brief

On 24 May 2021, the Ministry of Labor (STPS) published the guidelines for the registration of service suppliers of specialized services. This is effective 25 May 2021.


What it means for you?

  • Specialized services must not be part of the company's core business, nor the primary economic activity of the beneficiary of the services. 
  • The registration with the STPS is mandatory for individuals, or legal entities, providing specialized services, as well as complementary, or shared services in the same corporate group. 
  • In the performance of the services, the supplier provides or assigns its own employees in benefit of another party (beneficiary). 
  • The specialized services must have elements, or distinctive factors, of the activity performed by the contractor party, giving a value added to the beneficiary. 
  • Specialized services must be recognized in the corporate purpose of the supplier. 
  • The service supplier must be up to date in its tax and social security obligations at the tax and social security authorities (SAT, IMSS and INFONAVIT) on the date its registration is requested. 
  • The registration will be published here: The supplier should include the following information:
  1. Its primary economic activity. 
  2. The activities to be registered. 
  3. Its specialized economic activity, according to the "List of activities for the registration of companies with the work-related risk insurance" of the IMSS. 
  4. Details of the services to be provided and proof, under oath, of the specialized nature of each activity, as well details regarding the elements or factors supporting the exceptional character. 
  5. Proof of the specialized character, with information and documents, regarding: training, certifications, permits or licenses ruling the activity, equipment, technology, assets, capital stock, machinery, level of risk, average range salary, experience, among others.
  • Specialized services should be contemplated in the corporate purpose of the service supplier.
  • The STPS should answer the registration request within 20 working days, following receipt. Otherwise, the requesting party may request the authority to respond within the following 3 working days. If the authority does not issue the registration notice, it will be deemed complete. 
  • The registry will be in effect for 3 years. 
  • Among other reasons, the STPS may deny or cancel the registration if the specialized character is not proved, if the service provider is not up to date in its tax and social security obligations, if the services are part of the corporate purpose; or if the services provided are part of the primary economic activity of the beneficiary. 
  • Failure to get the registration, or to benefit from subcontracting of personnel against the new rules, may arise on penalties from USD 8,962 to USD 224,050.

Action to take

  • Identify those services provided where personnel are assigned for the benefit of your company. 
  • Review and renew specialized service agreements. 
  • Make sure that service providers of specialized services have the information and documents to prove the specialization of their services. 
  • Require specialized service suppliers to comply with the guidelines issued by the STPS and carry out the correspondent registration.

Our Labor Practice Group in Mexico will be available to provide any assistance you may need to comply with these relevant new obligations.

Contact Information

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