Millions of workers can be favored with a decision by the Federal Supreme Court (STF) on the review of values in the Severance Indemnity Fund (FGTS). A lawsuit, filed by the Solidarity party in 2014, asks for the index used to correct the fund to be changed. The trial was halted last year and is expected to resume in 2022.
The FGTS is a savings guaranteed to formal workers to be used in times of emergency, such as unfair dismissal, purchase of property and other uses. Since 1991, the amounts invested in this fund are adjusted by an index called the Reference Rate (TR). The problem is that this index has depreciated in recent years and has led to financial losses for workers.
To give you an idea, the TR was at zero between the beginning of 2017 and November 2021. As the FGTS is corrected by adding the TR at a fixed interest rate of 3%, there was a real loss for workers, who saw inflation rises considerably in this period.
The Direct Action of Unconstitutionality that is in the STF alleges that income below inflation represents a loss of assets for workers and violates constitutional rights.
The requirement is that the Reference Rate be replaced by some inflationary index, such as the IPCA. If this is done, workers will be able to receive, on average, R$ 10 thousand, equivalent to the retroactive correction by the new index. The maximum amount that can be received is R$ 72 thousand.
How to be entitled to review
The review that can be released with the STF decision concerns applications made to the FGTS after 1999. Therefore, if you contributed to the FGTS after that date, it is possible that you will benefit from the decision.
But there is controversy among experts over how the review will be applied. Some believe that, as it has a very large financial impact on public accounts (R$ 401 billion, according to the Ministry of Economy), it is possible that only those who participate in the ADI in the STF will benefit.
To participate in the Direct Action of Unconstitutionality, it is not necessary to have the assistance of a lawyer. If you decide to hire one, it is good to be aware of the value that can be gained from a favorable decision by the court.
To find out how much you can receive, the worker can consult the LOIT FGTS, a free platform. Through it, it is possible to generate an official report and even an initial Petition.
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