The Ibero-American Multilateral Agreement on Social Security (the “Agreement”) entered into on November 10, 2007, in Santiago de Chile, as well as its implementation agreement entered into in Madrid in 2008, both became effective in Argentina last August 1, 2016. The Agreement is an international legal norm within the framework of the Ibero-American Social Security Organization (OISS). This Agreement has been ratified so far by Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Uruguay, Portugal, Peru, El Salvador and Paraguay.
The Agreement aims to coordinate the States Parties´ legislations on social security. Article 3 provides for the benefits in cases of disability, old age, survivors, occupational accidents and illness. In addition, this benefit applies to workers who are forced to move to another State Party in order to continue their professional activity. Family members and other persons entitled to be provided with this benefit are also included. This Agreement will not apply to non-contributory systems, social assistance, or financial assistance for war victims.
One of the main principles of this Agreement is that the person who is developing an activity in another State Party will be treated in the same conditions, having the same rights, benefits and obligations, as if he were a native of said State. Furthermore, contribution periods will be considered taking into account the contributions in any other State Party. Additionally, the person will maintain the rights acquired in his State when moving to another State.
With regard to which legislation applies, the Agreement establishes as a general principle that individuals will be subject exclusively to the laws from the territory where they are developing their activity, whether dependently or not.
However, there are certain specifications:
- Individuals who develop a dependent professional, scientific or investigative activity in a company situated in a State Party and are temporally transferred to another State Party, will be subject to the laws of the state of origin for twelve-months. Said term may be exceptionally extended.
- Individuals who develop one of the abovementioned activities in a non-dependent way will also be subject to the laws of the first State Party for twelve months when moving to another State Party.
- A company’s staff which develops its activity in one or more State Parties, such as the staff of airlines companies, will be subject to the laws of the territory where the company has its main offices.
- Special regulations regarding dock workers, diplomatic missions’ personnel, public officials, etc.
In order to determine the disability, old age and survivors´ benefit, the State Party who is hosting a worker from another State Party, will take into account only the periods of contribution, insurance and employment in said State. If, despite this, the period is not enough to have access to the benefit, the worker can demand the periods in the previous States to be taken into account as well. Those who contribute to an individual regime will have their own personal account according to the legislation of each State.
With regard to occupational accidents and illness, the applicable law is the one of the State in which the worker was located at the moment of the accident or disease.
Lastly, the States Parties will have to cooperate with each other on the exchange of information and documentation. In addition, the Agreement establishes the creation of a Technical Administrative Committee where each State will have representation. This committee will be in charge of implementing the Agreement, solving any controversies that may arise, promoting international cooperation and developing new technologies.
In Argentina, the competent authority for implementing the Agreement is the Ministry of Labor, Employment and Social Security, through the Argentine Social Security Administration (ANSES), and other local authorities.