The Supreme Court declares that workers must receive payrolls with due clarity and separation of different economic perceptions. This obligation is not fulfilled when the payroll does not reflect the days on which the worker receives the supplement for Temporary Disability (TD), nor the percentage applied for its calculation, nor the number of days borrowed with each type of day and the salary corresponding to them.

Conceptos retributivos en las nóminas

Payroll transparency obligation

The trade union representation in the Contact Centercompany promotes a collective dispute considering that the payrolls prepared by the company do not meet the requirements of clarity and transparency legally required by the Workers’ Statute (ET art.29.1 and O 27-12-1994).
The company does not reflect in the payroll the days on which each worker receives the supplement for Temporary Disability recognized conventionally, nor the percentage applied for its calculation. In addition, when in the same month they have performed days with different weekly extension (extensions and reductions in working hours),the payroll does not reflect either the number of days borrowed with each type of day or the salary corresponding to them, but a daily wage unit calculated by the weighted average daily wage earned is fixed.

Therefore, the workers’ representation files a lawsuit before the social chamber of the National High Court, requesting that the right of workers to receive payrolls be declared with due clarity and separation of the different economic perceptions, when the company pays the improvement of Temporary Disability and when the workers extend or reduce the working day.

The demand is fully estimated so that the company,which considers that through the payroll model employed the worker can clearly know what was paid those days by performing the appropriate mathematical operations; he appeals in cassation to the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court recalls that article 29.1 of the Workers’ Statute establishes that the salary must be documented by providing the worker with an individual and supporting receipt, and that this receipt or payroll must conform to the official model or to that agreed within the company. Likewise, this model must contain with due clarity and separation, the different perceptions of the worker, as well as the deductions that legally proceed.

In the case of prosecution,the Supreme Court considers that the model of receipt of wages that is used in the company it does not meet the requirements of separation of concepts and clarity. Considering that it is not acceptable to force the worker to check the number of working days and the number of hours worked, as well as to carry out more or less complex mathematical operations to verify that the company pays him the right thing. This obligation runs counter to the principle of transparency with which action must be taken in the employment relationship. and that it must inspire the drafting of the contract and the other documents that derive from it, and that it requires that the content of the payroll be easy to verify the concepts paid; and the calculation and amount of each of them performing the minimum number of mathematical operations without having to go to the data register that, although the worker knows, are not communicated by the company.

Therefore, the appeal in cassation is dismissed and the judgment handed down by the National High Court in favour of the workers is confirmed.

Conceptos retributivos en las nóminas

Payment and receipt of wages

A. Corporate obligations

The obligations that the company has regarding the payment and receipt of the salaries of its workers, are:

  • facilitate the receipt of wages (of the model approved by the Ministry of Employment and Social Security (MEySS) or by collective agreement) expressing all clearly differentiated remuneration concepts. Failure to comply is a minor infraction. The physical receipt can be replaced by the telematic delivery if the appropriate means are in place to make it effective.
  • enter on the receipt of wages the amounts actually paid to the worker. Failure to comply is a minor infraction.
  • pay the salary on time. Failure to comply is a serious breach and allows the worker to terminate the contract.
  • archiving and conservation of the salary receipt, together with the Social Security Contribution Bulletins, for 4 years, in order to allow the appropriate checks. Failure to comply is a minor infraction.

B. Structure of the receipt of wages

Receipts for workers’ wages or payrolls must follow a certain structure:

  1. headline
    • identification of the company: name, address, CIF, social security contribution account.
    • worker identification: name, NIF, Social Security affiliation number, professional group and contribution.
    • settlement period, with the dates of the settled days.
    • Salary perceptions:
      • basic salary (fixed remuneration per unit of time that only takes into account the duration of the service, or of work that only takes into account the quality or quantity of the work);
      • salary supplements;
      • extraordinary gratuities;
      • products received in kind.
    • Non-wage perceptions
  3. Deductions
    • contributions from the work for: common contingencies, unemployment, vocational training and overtime;
    • employer contributions for: common contingencies, AT/EP, unemployment, vocational training, FOGASA and additional contributions for overtime;
    • advances;
    • value of products received in kind;
    • other deductions.
    • Calculated by taking the remuneration amounts of the different quotable concepts.
    • It attests to the perception of the payroll but does not imply conformity with them. In case of payment by bank transfer, the worker’s signature is understood to be replaced by the proof of payment issued by the bank.

C. Place and method of payment of the salary

    • In currency, check or heel, or by bank transfer (business option). nevertheless:
      • the worker may refuse to open a current account or savings card with a given bank, but may not oblige the employer to pay him the salary by transfer also to a certain institution.
      • if it uses the bank transfer formula, the company has to assume the risks that this may generate.
    • it must be punctual on the agreed date and place, or according to customs and customs;
    • refers to calendar months and may not exceed one month, except for remuneration of higher periodicity;
    • within the working day or immediately after (usually payment by bank transfer).

If a model other than the officer is established, it must contain, with due clarity and separation, the different remuneration concepts and the corresponding deductions.

Conceptos retributivos en las nóminas

All well reflected

As you well know, your company’s staff is entitled to receive their salary on time, so you should make sure you pay at least the Minimum Interprofessional Wage established (SMI) —or, where appropriate, that reflected in the agreement for each category—, and that all deductions are made well.

But there’s more:

You must issue a written document — the payroll — that you will deliver to each employee on the day of payment, or before. Whether the payrolls are prepared externally by a labor consultancy,or if you make them from within the company, they must include:

  • The composition of the gross salary, differentiating salary perceptions (base salary, supplements, overtime, pro rata of overtime and salary in kind), and non-wage perceptions.
  • The deductions to be practiced (Social Security, Personal Income Tax, advances, remuneration in kind …).
  • The determination of the social security contribution base, and the withholding of personal income tax.

By agreement, or by agreement between company and employee – or where appropriate with the works council – a payroll model different from the official one may be established.

Of course, it must include clearly and separately the different remuneration items and the relevant deductions, being easy to understand and without including calculations.

Beware of misrespecting this type of documents and not specifying each of the concepts well, because they can be considered a serious infraction, punishable by fines can range between 300.52 and 3,005.06 euros, for not entering in the payroll the amounts paid. And it is a minor infraction the unpunctual delivery of the payroll, or the use — without prior consensus — of receipts of salaries other than the officer; in this case, the penalty could range from 30.05 to 300.51 euros.

Always check that the payroll respects the official model, and if you use another model, check that it clearly reflects the different items and deductions. In addition to the amounts paid.

If you have any questions or need any clarification about the concepts that should be included in the payrolls of your workers, you can contact any of our advisors to help you solve it.