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LAW, REGULATION, OR NOM - what is the difference?  



In Mexico, Health and Safety programs are an EMPLOYER obligation for the protection of the workers. The Employer has the obligation to register all their workers in Social Security and include them in the Employer’s Health and Safety program.

What is the “prima de riesgo” or risk rate?

In a company, the probability that an accident or occupational illness will occur varies by the type of activities carried out and the controls implemented to diminish the risk. Employers should be aware of the risk rate and how to present their determination opportunely.

It is one of the fees that the Employer must pay to the IMSS (Mexican Institute of Social Security) to cover the probability of risk of accident or illness to which workers are exposed to according to the activities with which they are involved.

Am I obligated to pay a RISK RATE? 

All Employers that are Individuals or companies that have workers in their employ must calculate their risk rate through an annual review of their accidents and illnesses, that is to say, the frequency or index of occupational accidents or illnesses their employees have had between the 1st of January and the 31st of December.

What occurs when an Employer initially registers as an Employer?

When registering for the first time or changing activities, the companies must classify themselves in order to determine and pay the risk rate according to the catalogue of activities for the classification of companies. The criteria for doing so are the activities, economic division, economic group, section and class that correspond to them.

How is the classification of economic activities made for determining the occupational Risk Rate?

Article 196 of the REGULATION of the Social Security Law in matters of enrollment, the classification of companies, collection, and taxation contains the catalogue of activities and indicates the division to which they belong.

According to the activities, the company can identify the classification that corresponds to them within the eight divisions covered in the catalogue.

Once the Division is identified, the group that it belongs to must be determined.

What are the classes and percentage of the fees for each one?

For this answer we consult Article 73 of the Social Security Law.

“Article 73. After registering in the Social Security System for the first time or changing activity, companies will pay the median rate for the Class that corresponds to them according to the Regulation, according to the following table:

Is the Risk Rate a permanent indicator?

NO. Each year the company should recalculate the risk rate and according to the accidents and illnesses registered for the company, the risk rate can be lowered or increased. The Risk Rate is recalculated before the end of February.

“Article 74. Companies will have the obligation to review annually their accident rate, according to the period and within the time period stipulated by the regulation for determining whether they stay with the same rate, or if it decreases or increases.

The rate that the companies are using for payment of their contributions can be modified, either by increasing or decreasing it at a proportion no higher than ONE PERCENT according to the immediate past year, taking into consideration the finished occupational accidents during the time period that the regulation establishes, independently of the date they occurred and the documentary corroboration of the establishment of programs or preventive actions for accidents and occupational illnesses. These modifications cannot exceed the limits set for the minimum and maximum rate, which will be zero point five percent and FIFTEEN PERCENT of the respective base wage estimate rate.”

How is the risk rate calculated?

Article 72 of the Social Security Law contains the formula for the calculation of the risk rate.

“Article 72. For the purposes of the setting of the rates to pay for insurance for occupational risks, companies must calculate their rates, multiplying the accident rate of the company by a factor of the rate, and add 0.005 to the results. The result will be the rate to apply on the salaries to be calculated according to the following formula:


Rate = [(S/365)+V * (I + D)] * (F/N) + M


 V = 28 years, which is the average active life on an individual that has not been the victim of a fatal accident or a permanent total disability.

 F = 2.3, that is the factor of the rate.

 N = Average number of workers exposed to risk.

 S = Total of the days that have subsidized for temporary disability.

 I = Sum of the percentages of permanent, partial, and total disabilities, divided by 100.

 D = Number of deaths

 M = 0.005, the is the minimum rate of risk.


After enrollment in the Social Security program for the first time or after changing activity, the companies will pay, in the industrial classification that corresponds to them according to the regulation, the median rate. Once the company is designated for the rate it is to pay, the following increases or decreases of the rate will be made according to the first paragraph of this Article.


The accidents that occur to the workers in their movement from home to the workplace or vice versa will not be taken into account for the accident rate of the companies.

The employers whose workplaces have a system of administration and occupational safety accredited by the Secretary of Labor and Social Welfare (STPS)*, will apply an “F” of 2.2 as a rate factor.

Companies of less than 10 workers can opt for presenting the corresponding annual declaration or pay the average rate that corresponds to them according to the Regulation, according to Article 73 of this Law.”  

 *Certification of the company Health and Safety program through the Federal STPS Auto Gestión certification program.

Is the Risk Rate a permanent indicator?

NO. Each year the company should recalculate the risk rate and according to the accidents and illnesses registered for the company, the risk rate can be lowered or increased. The Risk Rate is recalculated on the first of March of the year.



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