The ministry of labor says in the case of a force majeure “the parties are exonerated from the reciprocal obligations imposed on them by the contract.”
After various inquiries emerged in Chile about how employers and workers should operate if a complete quarantine was decreed, the ministry of labor issued a set of rules Thursday allowing employers not to pay their workers' wages.
The document published by the government of right-wing President Sebastian Piñera says that in the case of a force majeure “the parties are exonerated from the reciprocal obligations imposed on them by the contract.”
The statement adds that employers will thus no longer have the obligation to offer any work or to pay any wage to their workers. Likewise, the workers are not obliged to fulfill their functions.
Chile's government announced Wednesday a quarantine for large parts of the capital Santiago after the country passed 1,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus.
Health Minister Jaime Manalich said the ban on movement would begin Thursday night and last for seven days.
The measure applies to 1.3 million people living mainly in the rich eastern areas of the city where the virus surfaced among people who had recently been to Europe.
As of Thursday, the South American country has 1,306 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and four deaths. Manalich said health authorities would set up a sanitary cordon around the city to contain the spread of the virus, although other cases were confirmed outside Santiago.