Colorado Department of Labor Requires Paid Leave During Coronavirus Testing

March 13, 2020

On Wednesday, March 11, 2020, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (“CDLE”) issued the Colorado Health Emergency Leave with Pay (“Colorado HELP”) Rules, which require employers in certain industries to provide up to four days of paid leave for employees who are being tested for Coronavirus.The covered industries are:

  • Leisure and Hospitality
  • Food Services
  • Child care
  • Education, including transportation, food service, and related work at educational establishments
  • Home health, if working with elderly, disabled, ill, or otherwise high-risk individuals
  • Nursing homes
  • Community living facilities

An employee being tested must be paid his/her regular rate of pay for the employee’s regularly worked hours. If the employee’s pay fluctuates, he/she must be paid the average daily pay for the preceding month. 

The requirement ends upon a negative test result and does not apply to employees who have been quarantined after testing positive. If an employer already provides paid sick leave sufficient to cover four days during testing, the employer needs not provide an additional four days pursuant to these rules. 

The rules went into effect on March 11, 2020 and will remain in effect for the longer of 30 days or the duration of the state of emergency declared by the Governor, up to a maximum of 120 days.  More information can be found on the CDLE website here.