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13. Social security system5

13.2 Basic aspects of the General Social Security Program

In those cases in which the employees or employers are subjected to the General Social Security program, social security contributions are paid partly by the employer and partly by the employee. Personnel are classified under a number of professional and job categories for the purposes of determining their social security contributions. Each category has a maximum and minimum contribution base, which are generally reviewed on a yearly basis. Employees whose total compensation exceeds the maximum base, or does not reach the minimum base, must bring their contributions into line with the contribution base for their respective category.

For 2020, the maximum contribution base will be €4,070.10 per month for all professional categories and groups. Therefore, the situation for 2020 under the general social security program (applicable to the great majority of workers) is as follows6:

CategoryMinimum Base
(€/month)
Maximum Base
(€/month)
Engineers and graduates1,466.104,070.10
Technical engineers and assistants1,057.804,070.10
Clerical and workshop supervisors1,050.004,070.10
Unqualified assistants1,050.004,070.10
Clerical officers1,050.004,070.10
Messengers1,050.004,070.10
Clerical assistants1,050.004,070.10
CATEGORYMINIMUM BASE (€/DAY)MAXIMUM BASE (€/DAY)
Class 1 and class 2 skilled workers35.00135.67
Class 3 skilled workers and specialists35.00135.67
Laborers35.00135.67
Workers under 18 years of age35.00135.67

The contribution rates applicable to employers and employees under the general social security program in 2020 are as follows:

 Employer
(%)
Employee
(%)
Total (%)
General contingencies23.64.728.30
Unemployment
General rule75.501.557.05
Fixed-term contracts (full-time and part-time)6.71.68.3
Professional training0.60.10.7
Wage Guarantee Fund0.2-0.2
Total general rule29.96.3536.25
Total fixed-term contracts 31.16.437.51

The total employer contribution rate is increased by additional percentages relating to the occupational accident and disease contingencies provided for in the State Budget Law which will depend, as a general rule, on the activity of the company, although a common percentage will be applied across the board in the case of some occupations or situations.

Employers deduct the employees’ portion of contributions from their paychecks and pay them over, together with the employer’s portion of contributions, to the social security authorities. Similarly, following the above-mentioned Royal Decree-Law 16/2013 of December 2013, employers must notify the Social Security General Treasury in each settlement period of the amount of all the remuneration items paid to their employees, irrespective of whether or not they are included in the social security contribution base and even if single bases are applicable.

Included below are three practical examples for calculating the social security contribution for general contingencies payable by employers for workers subject to the general social security program.

Case 1: A person works as an administrative assistant for a company under a full-time indefinite-term contract and receives a salary of €13,300 per year.

  • Data used to calculate the contribution for general contingencies:
    1. The contribution base to be used will be the minimum for administrative assistants, i.e., €1,050.00 per month, given that the monthly salary received by the worker is lower than this amount.
    2. The contribution rate applicable to the aforesaid amount will be 29.9% for the employer and 6.35% for the worker, bearing in mind that the contract is indefinite-term.
  • Monthly contribution (general contingencies):

     Base (€)Contribution rate (%)Monthly contribution (€)
    Employer1,050.0029.9313.95
    Worker1,050.006.3566.67
    380.62

Case 2: A person works as a technical engineer for a company under a full-time fixed-term contract and receives a salary of €24,996 per year.

  • Data used to calculate the contribution for general contingencies:
    1. The contribution base to be used will be the monthly salary received by the worker, i.e., €2,083.
    2. The contribution rate applicable to the aforesaid amount will be 31.1% for the employer and 6.4% for the worker, bearing in mind that the contract is fixed-term.
  • Monthly contribution (general contingencies):

     Base (€)Contribution rate (%)Monthly contribution (€)
    Employer2,08331.1647.81
    Worker2,0836.4133.312
    781.12

Case 3: A person with the job category “graduate” (licenciado) works for a company under a part-time indefinite-term contract and receives a salary of €56,981.40 per year.

  • Data used to calculate the contribution for general contingencies:
    1. The contribution base to be used will be the maximum for graduates, i.e., €4,070.10 per month, given that the monthly salary of the worker is higher than this amount.
    2. The contribution rate applicable to the aforesaid amount will be 29.9% for the employer and 6.3% for the employee, bearing mind that the contract is indefinite-term.
  • Monthly contribution (general contingencies):

     Base (€)Contribution rate (%)Monthly contribution (€)
    Employer4,070.1029.91,216.95
    Worker4,070.106.35258.45
    1,475.40

In all cases, the employer must also contribute for professional contingencies at the premium rates stipulated in additional provision four of Law 42/2006, of December 28, 2006. The resulting amounts are borne exclusively by the employer.

5http://www.seg-social.es/

6Order TMS/83/2019, of January 31 has been extended in 2020.

7It includes: indefinite-term contracts (including part-time indefinite-term contracts and indefinite-term contracts for seasonal work), and fixed-term contracts (in the form of training contracts, hand-over and relief contracts and any type of contract made with disabled workers who have been recognized as having a degree of disability of at least 33% of their physical or mental capacity.