In Employment Law


Sandstrum Law – The following contains general insight into Colorado law regarding overtime, workweek, and related issues regarding employees: Employer/Employee should contact or consult Sandstrum Law or an attorney for legal advice as deemed warranted. 

Overtime Hours

Employees shall be paid time and one-half of the regular rate of pay for any work in excess of: (1) forty hours per workweek; (2) twelve hours per workday, or (3) twelve consecutive hours without regard to the starting and ending time of the workday (excluding duty free meal periods), whichever calculation results in the greater payment of wages.

Workweek Definition and Overtime

A workweek is defined as any consecutive seven-day period starting with the same calendar day and hour each week. A workweek is a fixed and recurring period of 168 hours, seven consecutive twenty-four hour periods, and is typically established by the employer. Hours worked in two or more workweeks shall not be averaged for computation of overtime.

Regular Rate of Pay

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.

For individuals covered under Colorado Minimum Wage Order Number 30, the following rules apply. For more information on coverage, please contact the Division of Labor at 303-318-8441.

Meal Periods.  Employees shall be entitled to an uninterrupted and ‘duty free’ meal period of at least a thirty minute duration when the scheduled work shift exceeds five consecutive hours of work. The employees must be completely relieved of all duties and permitted to pursue personal activities 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 shall be permitted to consume an “on-duty” meal while performing duties. Employees shall be permitted to fully consume a meal of choice “on the job” and be fully compensated for the “on-duty” meal period without any loss of time or compensation.

Deductions For Meals. The reasonable cost or fair market value of meals provided to the employee may be used as part of the minimum hourly wage. No profits to the employer may be included in the reasonable cost or fair market value of such meals furnished. The meal must be consumed before deductions are permitted.

Rest Periods. Every employer shall authorize and permit rest periods, which, insofar as practicable, shall be in the middle of each four-hour work period. A compensated ten-minute rest period for each four 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 said rest period.

References Advisory Bulletin: Overtime Pay, 10(I) 
Colorado Minimum Wage Order Number 30 (Section 4)

Colorado Minimum Wage Order Number 30 (Sections 7 and 8)
CO Dept. Labor & Employment/Wage&Hour