Colorado Revised Statutes C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq.: Colorado Employee Rights

Colorado employment law provides a wide range of protections and rights for employees in addition to the rights protected under federal employment law. Many of these protections are found in the Colorado Revised Statutes under Title 24, including protections from unlawful employment discrimination under the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act. In addition to protections from discrimination on the basis of age, race, national origin, religion, sex, disability, sexual orientation and pregnancy, Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq. includes other protections for employees. This page will discuss these other rights and protections under Colorado employment law.

Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act statute

Retaliation claims under Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq.

Retaliation for complaining about employment discrimination under the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act or participating in an investigation of employment discrimination is a prohibited act. Employees who suffer an adverse employment action by the employer for complaining about or participating in an investigation of employment discrimination may recover for lost wages, attorney fees and other remedies.

This includes filing a complaint of employment discrimination with the Colorado Civil Rights Division, cooperating with investigators, testifying in a hearing on a complaint with the CCRD, or participating as a complaining party in a CCRD hearing.

Discrimination on the basis of marriage to another employee under Colorado employment law

Colorado Revised Statutes C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq. also protects employees from discrimination on the basis of marriage to another employee of the employer. (C.R.S. 24-34-402.) An employer may not fire or refuse to hire an employee because that person is married to or intends to marry another employee. This protection is subject to several exceptions:

  • It only applies to employers with more than 25 employees
  • One spouse would have disciplinary or supervisory authority over the other
  • One spouse would audit money handled or controlled by the other spouse
  • A spouse has access to the employer’s confidential information, including payroll and personnel records

Right to discuss wages with coworkers under Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq.

Employees are generally free to discuss their wages and other compensation with their coworkers. An employer may not take an adverse employment action against employees for discussing wages. An employer also cannot require employees to sign nondisclosure agreements that bar the employee from discussing compensation with coworkers. This only applies to employees covered by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

CADA discrimination

Protections for off premises activities by employees under C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq.

Unlike some states, like Texas, an employer in Colorado generally cannot terminate employees for their off premises and off the clock activities. (C.R.S. 24-34-402.5.) Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq. establishes exceptions to the general rule. These exceptions include:

  • It relates to a bona fide occupational requirement
  • It relates to a specific employee or group of employees rather than all employees
  • The restriction on the employee is necessary to avoid a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest
  • This protection only applies to employers with more than fifteen employees

An employee fired in violation of this protection may require lost wages and benefits plus attorney’s fees. The statutory language under Colorado Revised Statutes C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq. does not allow recovery of other damages like punitive damages or nonpecuniary damages.

Protected leave for victims of domestic violence under Colorado employment law

Colorado Revised Statutes C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq. also protects the right of victims of domestic violence, stalking and other crimes related to domestic violence to up to three days of leave for medical care, securing the home, or seeking legal help related to the domestic violence.

An employer may not discharge an employee in violation of this provision. If the employer violates C.R.S. 24-34-402.7 the employee may recover lost wages and benefits. The statutory language does not allow an award of attorney’s fees or other damages.

Employment lawyers in Denver, Colorado for Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq. claims

Employees in Denver and other parts of Colorado who believe they have a claim under Colorado Revised Statutes C.R.S. 24-34-401 et seq. should contact a Denver employment lawyer right away. Many claims under Colorado Revised Statutes 24-34-401 et seq. require specific processes to take place within limited time periods to preserve claims. Failure to follow the statutory processes can bar any relief. Employment lawyers in Colorado understand these processes and Colorado employment law. They can help assess your claims and get you the justice you deserve.