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Costa Rica

Remote and Flexible Work Options

Learn about remote work policies and flexible work arrangements in Costa Rica

Remote work

In Costa Rica, the "Law to Regulate Telework" enacted in 2022 provides a legal framework for remote work. It ensures that remote workers have the same rights as traditional employees, including minimum wage, vacation time, and social security benefits. Employment contracts must clearly define the terms of telework arrangements, including work hours, communication methods, performance evaluation methods, and data security protocols. Employers are responsible for providing training on telework practices and implementing measures to protect the occupational health and safety of remote workers. They also remain responsible for withholding income taxes and social security contributions for remote workers in Costa Rica.

Costa Rica has a well-developed technological infrastructure. High-speed internet access is widely available in urban areas, with continuous improvement in rural regions. Mobile phone coverage is extensive, with reliable data plans offered by various providers. Power outages are infrequent, but backup solutions like surge protectors are advisable for remote workers.

Employers have additional responsibilities for a successful remote work environment. They need to establish clear communication channels and utilize collaboration tools to ensure effective teamwork among remote employees. Performance evaluation methods suitable for a remote work setting should be developed. Regular check-ins, goal setting, and clear communication of expectations are crucial. Robust data security measures should be implemented to protect sensitive company information accessed remotely. While not mandated by law, some employers may choose to contribute to equipment costs or reimburse internet/data plan expenses. The well-being of remote employees should be considered, which may involve clear boundaries between work and personal life, and mechanisms to address potential feelings of isolation.

Flexible work arrangements

Part-time work is recognized under the Labor Code (Article 8) in Costa Rica, allowing employees to negotiate for such arrangements. Part-time employees are entitled to benefits proportionate to their work hours, including salary, paid time off, and social security contributions (Labor Code, Article 57).


While there are no explicit legal provisions for flexitime in the Costa Rican Labor Code, Article 82 allows for negotiating alternative work schedules with employer approval. This can be interpreted as enabling flexitime arrangements. Employers implementing flexitime should establish clear guidelines regarding core working hours, communication protocols during flexible hours, and workload expectations.

Job Sharing

Job sharing isn't expressly addressed in Costa Rican labor law. However, the flexibility within Article 8 on work schedule negotiations could be interpreted to allow distributing full-time job duties between two or more part-time employees. Job sharing arrangements require careful division of responsibilities, clear communication channels, and potentially overlapping work hours to ensure smooth collaboration.

Equipment and Expense Reimbursements

The Labor Code and Law No. 9738 don't mandate employers to provide equipment or reimburse expenses related to flexible work arrangements. However, employers can choose to do so through mutually agreed-upon terms within employment contracts.

Data protection and privacy

Employers have a legal responsibility under Law No. 8968 to implement appropriate technical and organizational measures to protect company data accessed by remote employees. This is inspired by the principles of the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Employers should also train remote employees on data security best practices, including password management, recognizing phishing attempts, and proper data handling procedures. Transparency and communication are crucial. Employers must be clear about the data collected from remote employees and its intended use. Clear data privacy policies accessible to all employees adhere to the principles outlined in Law No. 8968.

Employee Rights

Employees have the right to access their personal data held by the employer and request rectification of any inaccuracies, as per Law No. 8968, Articles 14 & 15. Under the right to be forgotten, inspired by GDPR principles, employees may request the deletion of their personal data if it's no longer required for employment purposes (Law No. 8968, Article 16). Employees also have a right to confidentiality regarding their personal data (Law No. 8968, Article 6).

Best Practices for Securing Data

Employers should collect and store only the minimum data necessary for remote work functions. Sensitive data should be encrypted both at rest and in transit. Implementing strong access controls to company data and systems, granting access only to authorized personnel, is also crucial.

Maintaining regular data backups ensures data recovery in case of incidents. It's also important to develop a plan to identify, report, and address data security breaches.

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