How to Hire Remote Employees In 

Venezuela

The Basics

Currency
Venezuelan Bolívar (VEF)
Employer Taxes
15.75% - 27.00%
Payroll Frequency
Monthly
Official Language
Spanish

Employment in 

Venezuela

Hire Independent Contractors

Independent contractors or freelancers are self-employed individuals who provide services to companies as a non-employee. This is one of the most common ways companies tend to hire non-local designers, engineers, support reps, etc.

For legal and tax purposes, independent contractors are not classified as employees. They may work for multiple clients, set their own work hours, negotiate their pay rate, and decide how a job gets done.

For example, the IRS says that if an independent contractor or freelancer does work that can be controlled (what will be done and how it will be done) by an employer then they are, in fact, classified as an employee.

As you can imagine, hiring someone as an independent contractor versus an employee is a fine line to tread.

While there are benefits when you choose the contractor route, there are quite a few drawbacks to consider and you’ll need to weigh them carefully to determine the best fit for your company.

Benefits of Hiring Independent Contractors
Reduced overhead: Lower cost in expenses, payroll, benefits, and more.
Greater flexibility: Contractors can be brought on as-needed. If not a good fit, you simply don’t have to move forward with the contract.
Reduced legal risk: Contractors aren’t usually protected by employment anti-discrimination and workplace safety laws.
Disadvantages of Hiring Independent Contractors
Risk of Misclassification: Not only does this deny workers their proper protections, it can also result in steep penalties and damage to your company. If the IRS determines that employee misclassification has occurred, you will be liable for a percentage of the employees wages, FICA contributions, penalty fines, unpaid taxes, up to a year in prison, and more.
Lack of Control: Contractors are drawn to being independent because it gives them greater control over the work they perform and who they work with. Because they’re not employees, you can’t tell them what to work on and how it should be done.
Lack of Loyalty: Contractors come and go as-needed. Many companies hire contractors for short-term work, which makes it difficult to cultivate loyalty.
Increased Scrutiny: Using Independent Contractors typically leads to an increased risk of being audited.

Set up a subsidiary in 

Venezuela

A foreign subsidiary is a company that operates overseas as part of a larger company who’s HQ is in another country.

Establishing a foreign entity is great for having an international presence and accessing new markets. Though, setting up a subsidiary in Venezuela can be expensive, stressful, and time-consuming. It's not for the faint of heart.

To set up a subsidiary in Venezuela, you have to:

  1. Register your business name and file articles of incorporation
  2. File for local bank accounts
  3. Learn and keep track of the local employment laws
  4. Set up local payroll
  5. Hire local accounting, legal, and HR people

If you're lucky, this process can take months. If you're not so lucky, it can take up to a year. And on average, it costs about $50k-$80k, all-in-all, to get setup. And that's just for Venezuela.

Use an Employer-of-Record (EOR)

An employer-of-record (EOR) is a company that hires and pays an employee on behalf of another company.

An EOR is typically used to overcome the financial and regulatory hurdles that often come with employing remote workers.

Each country has its own payroll, employment, and work permit requirements for non-resident companies doing business in their jurisdiction. Meeting those demands can be a huge obstacle when it comes to hiring remotely.

At Panther, we help companies employ and pay people in over 160 countries, without having to set up a foreign subsidiary. Payroll, benefits, taxes, compliance, and more are all handled by us, at a fraction of the cost.

Outside of saving you months and tens of thousands of dollars, other advantages of using Panther are:

  • Ability to attract talented and motivated employees from all over the world.
  • Full legal compliance: There is no risk of violating local employment laws.
  • Transparency: Employees are still your employees. All the work, processes, operations and day-to-day business belong to you, the company, just like with any other employee. Panther just takes on all of the responsibilities, obligations and admin work related to your team's employment.
  • No risk of misclassification

Because you no longer have to set up your own subsidiary, you’ll save a ton of time and tens of thousands of dollars using Panther.

Paying Remote Employees

This means that you have to know, understand, and keep up with 1) fluctuating currency changes, and 2) local payroll and tax laws in the countries you’re looking to hire in.

Outside of the laws and regulations around payroll, there may be different conditions surrounding leave, overtime, termination, and more. As you can imagine, maintaining this kind of regulatory knowledge can be challenging. But it is crucial and necessary to follow local legislation.

After, you’ll have to determine the best way to pay your international employees. This can be done in a number of ways, including but not limited to:

Pay through a local entity

One of the most challenging (and expensive) parts of paying international employees is setting up the infrastructure to do so.

Before you start to run payroll, you have to register your company as the local employer in the country the worker resides in. As you can see in the “Set up a subsidiary” section, this is a multi-step process that can take up to a year and put you on your way to bankruptcy.

Work with an EOR

Outside of EORs acting as the full admin employer, many also provide remote payroll.

For example, at Panther, in just 1-click, you’re able to pay your entire global team, anywhere in the world. We send you an invoice each month, charge you in US Dollars, and pay your employees the same amount in their local currency.

We factor in currency fluctuations and use the mid-market rate plus any applicable fee passed on by our provider at cost at the time of billing.

Paying employees in Venezuela is not the same as paying workers in your own country. Employees have to be paid using Venezuela's employment and payroll standards.

Venezuela

 Specific Information

Working Hours

A full work week in Venezuela is 5 days and 40 hours, or 8 hours a day.  In general, the work week should not be longer than 5 days and must consist of 2 days of consecutive rest days (one of the days must be a Sunday).  However, there are some exceptions:

  • If the work is related to public interest, technical reason, or unforeseen circumstances- a 2 days rest period may be any 2 consecutive days of the week.
  • Shift work- In the case of shit work, rest days do not have to include Sundays. If there is only one rest day per week, the employee must be given an additional vacation day in lieu.

Overtime

Overtime is paid at a rate of 150% of the normal pay.

Payroll Tax

Employer

  • 22.5% - Employer Contributions

Minimum Wage

The monthly minimum wage is 1,200,000 VEF.

Payroll

Pay Cycle

The payroll cycle could be monthly or bi-weekly.

Leave

Paid Time Off (PTO)

In Venezuela, employees are entitled to 15 days of paid annual leave.  In addition, an employee is entitled to an additional day for every year employed (capped at a total of 30 days paid leave).

Public Holidays

There are 12 public holidays.

Sick Days

Employees can take up to 1 year of sick leave.  The employer is obligated to pay the first 3 days of sick pay.  After that, it is the responsibility of social security to pay the employee. The employee must provide a medical certificate within 48 hours.   

Maternity Leave

Mothers receive a total of 26 weeks of maternity leave; 6 weeks before the expected due date and 20 weeks following the birth. Salary is paid at the rate of 66.6% by social security.

Paternity Leave

New fathers can take up to 14 days of paternity leave.

Parental Leave

Parents are entitled to one paid leave day a month in the event that their child is ill up until the child is 12 months old.

Other Leave

None.

Marriage Leave

None.

Bereavement Leave

None.

Termination

Termination Process

In Venezuela, the majority of employee contracts are subject to what is referred to as ‘employment stability.’ Under employment stability, employees can only be terminated for just cause.

The employer must notify the labor courts within 5 days after dismissal and include justification for the termination.

Notice Period

There is no statutory notice period in Venezuela, this is usually something that is agreed upon in the employment contract.

Severance Pay

Employees are entitled to what is called ‘seniority benefit’ which is equal to 30 days’ pay for every year employed.

Probation Period

In Venezuela, probation period is not outlined in the labor laws.  However, it is possible to terminate an employee without cause in the first 30 days of employment.