Colorado

Labor Compliance Guide

Hours & Pay Regulations

Normal Working Hours

Workday is defined as any consecutive twenty-four (24) hour period starting with the same hour each day and the same hour as the beginning of the workweek. The workday is set by the employer and may accommodate flexible work shift scheduling.

Overtime

Under Colorado Minimum Wage Order Number 25, employers must pay employees covered by Colorado’s overtime law time-and-one-half their regular rate of pay for hours worked in excess of 12 consecutive hours or 40 hours per week. The regular rate of pay for an employee is used to calculate overtime pay. The regular rate of pay is expressed as a rate per hour, and it is determined by dividing the total remuneration provided to an employee in any workweek by the total numbers of hours actually worked in that workweek.

 

The regular rate of pay includes all compensation paid to employees including the set hourly rate, shift differential, non-discretionary bonuses, production bonuses, and commissions. The following are excludable from the regular rate of pay: business expenses, bona fide gifts, discretionary bonuses, employer investment contributions, vacation pay, holiday pay, sick leave, or jury duty.

 

Under Colorado state wage law, employers are required to pay each non-exempt employee an overtime wage of one-and-a-half times the employee’s regular hourly rate for all hours worked in excess of:

      • 40 hours in one workweek;
      • 12 hours in one workday;
      • 12 consecutive hours, regardless of whether the work period overlaps into a second day;  without regard to the starting and ending time of the workday.

According to Colorado’s overtime laws, an employer must pay its employees under the method that would give the greatest benefit to the employee i.e., whichever calculation results in the greater payment of wages. This is a state-mandatory law for all hourly employees in Colorado. 

Breaks

Every employer shall authorize and permit rest periods, which, insofar as practicable, shall be in the middle of each four (4) hour work period. A compensated ten (10) minute rest period for each four (4) hours or major fractions thereof shall be permitted for all employees. Such rest periods shall not be deducted from the employee’s wages. It is not necessary that the employee leave the premises for the said rest period.

 

An employee that works at least three and a half (3½) continuous hours is permitted:

      • One (1) 10-minute rest period if the employee works at least three and a half (3½) continuous hours and less than 7 continuous hours;
      • Two (2) 10-minute rest periods if the employee works at least seven (7) continuous hours and less than eleven (11) continuous hours;
      • Three (3) 10-minute rest periods if the employee works at least eleven (11) continuous hours and less than fifteen (15) continuous hours; or
      • Four (4) 10-minute rest periods if the employee works at least fifteen (15) continuous hours and less than nineteen (19) continuous hours. Nev. Admin. Code 608.16.

An employee may voluntarily agree to forgo any rest or meal period. Nev. Admin. Code 608.16.

 

Breast Feeding Break

An employer shall provide reasonable unpaid break time or permit an employee to use paid break time, mealtime, or both, each day to allow the employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for up to two years after the child’s birth.

The employer shall make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location in close proximity to the work area, other than a toilet stall, where an employee can express breast milk in privacy. An employer that makes reasonable efforts to accommodate an employee who chooses to express breast milk in the workplace shall be deemed to be in compliance with the requirements.

Public Holidays

Colorado wage law does not require nor prohibit any paid holidays and does not require nor prohibit any extra pay for working on holidays. When an employee is paid for a non-work holiday, the holiday hours do not count towards overtime unless actual work was performed on the holiday.

Annual Leave

In general, the granting of vacation leave by an employer for a current employee is made pursuant to the employer’s policy. The Division of Labor Standards and Statistics does not intervene in disputes involving the scheduling of vacation leave or the denial of use of vacation leave for current employees.

Minimum Wage

Effective January 1, 2020, Colorado’s hourly minimum wage is $12.00.

 

 

 

 

The above information on minimum wages might not be up to date & subject to change. Kindly access the DOL website for the current rates.

Meal Breaks

Employees are entitled to an uninterrupted, ‘duty-free’ meal period of at least 30 minutes when the scheduled work shift exceeds five consecutive hours. The employees must be completely relieved of all duties and permitted to pursue personal activities for this to qualify as a non-work, uncompensated period of time. When the nature of the business activity or other circumstances exist that makes an uninterrupted meal period impractical, the employee must be permitted to consume an ‘on-duty’ meal while performing duties. Employees who are permitted to fully consume a meal of choice ‘on the job’ must be fully compensated for the on-duty meal period.

 

Every employer must permit rest periods which, as far as is practicable, are in the middle of each four-hour work period. A compensated 10 minute rest period for every four hours or major fractions thereof shall be permitted for all employees, without deduction from the employee’s wages. It is not necessary that the employee leave the premises for the rest period.

Special Leave

Unpaid Leave
Employees may be eligible to take unpaid, job-protected, leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”). Please refer to the main United States page for further details on this Federal law.
Jury Duty Leave

All regularly employed trial or grand jurors shall be paid regular wages, but not to exceed fifty dollars per day unless by mutual agreement between the employee and employer, by their employers for the first three days of juror service or any part thereof.

Domestic Abuse Leave

An employee can request or take up to three working days of leave from work in any twelve-month period, with or without pay, if the employee is the victim of domestic abuse, stalking and sexual assault, or any other crime related to domestic abuse.

Donor Leave

State employees are entitled to up to two days of paid leave per fiscal year, cannot be accumulated. (§24-50-104) Living Organ Donor Support Act. The legislation provides paid leave for employees who would like to become a living organ donor and gives private employers a voluntary tax credit of 35% if an employee’s salary to cover up to 10 business days of paid leave. (HB1202).

Voting Leave

Employers must allow employees who are qualified and registered to vote up to two paid hours of work time to vote in any primary or general election. Employees must apply for leave prior to election day. The employer may specify the hours during which the employee may be absent. However, if the employee requests that the time away from work be at the beginning or end of the work shift, the employer must grant this request. An employer is not required to grant voting leave to any employee who has three or more hours off from work while the polls are open on election day.

Military Leave

In addition to USERRA, Colorado law provides reinstatement rights for state and U.S. military service members. Employees who are called to active service must be granted unlimited unpaid time off and reinstated to their former positions with all pay, seniority, and benefits they would have had if they had been continuously employed. Additionally, Colorado provides up to 15 days of unpaid leave per year to members of the National Guard or the U.S. armed forces in order to attend military training. These members also have reinstatement rights to their former positions as long as they are still qualified for the positions. Employees must provide documentation of satisfactory completion of their training.

Paid Leave

Every employer in private employment shall provide paid leave to each employee of the employer as follows:

      • An employee is entitled to at least 0.01923 hours of paid leave for each hour of work performed.
      • An employee may, as determined by the employer, obtain paid leave by receiving on the first day of each benefit year the total number of hours of paid leave that the employee is entitled to accrue in a benefit year; or accruing over the course of a benefit year the total number of hours of paid leave that the employee is entitled to accrue in a benefit year.
      • Paid leave accrued over the course of a benefit year may carry over for each employee between his or her benefit years of employment, except an employer may limit the amount of paid leave for each employee carried over to a maximum of 40 hours per benefit year. An employer may limit the amount of paid leave an employee uses to 40 hours per benefit year. An employer may set a minimum increment of paid leave, not to exceed 4 hours, that an employee may use at any one time.

An employee in private employment may use paid leave available for use by that employee as follows:

      • An employer shall allow an employee to use paid leave beginning on the 90th calendar day of his or her employment.
      • An employee may use paid leave available for use by that employee without providing a reason to his or her employer for such use.
      • An employee shall, as soon as practicable, give notice to his or her employer to use the paid leave available for use by that employee.
Parental Leave for School Activities

Employers with 50 or more employees must grant employees with children up to 4 hours of unpaid leave per school year to attend parent-teacher conferences, school activities, or school-sponsored events, or to volunteer or be involved at the school during school hours. Leave must be taken in at least one-hour increments at a time agreed to by the employer and employee. Notice and documentation requirements apply.

Maternity Leave

The Nevada Pregnant Workers’ Fairness Act (Act) covers employers with 15 or more employees and provides pregnant employees’ rights in the workplace. The Act requires covered employers to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers, including leave from work. If an employer provides leave (paid or unpaid) without loss of seniority to employees due to sickness or disability, it is unlawful for an employer to fail or refuse to extend the same benefits to any female employee for a condition related to pregnancy, childbirth or a related medical condition.

 

The employee must be able to use available leave before and after childbirth, miscarriage, or other natural resolution of her pregnancy. However, it is unlawful for an employer to require an employee who is affected by a condition relating to pregnancy, childbirth or a related medical condition to take leave from work if another reasonable accommodation is available that will enable the employee to continue working. Employers with 50 or more employees are also subject to the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which requires up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for eligible female employees due to childbirth and related conditions.

Last updated on: June 10th, 2020