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Payment of Wages: Colorado

Payment of Wages requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Authors: Tareen Zafrullah, Stuart R. Buttrick, Susan W. Kline and Mary L. Will, Faegre Baker Daniels LLP


  • In Colorado, an employer may pay wages in cash, by check, by direct deposit into an employee's checking or savings account or by electronic paycard. See Wage Payment Methods.
  • Colorado employees must be paid on regular paydays occurring not more than one calendar month or 30 days apart. An employer must generally pay employees no later than 10 days following the close of each pay period. Penalties may be imposed for violations. See Pay Frequency.
  • In Colorado, certain deductions from employees' pay are permitted and others are prohibited. Penalties may be imposed for violations. See Permitted and Prohibited Wage Deductions.
  • An employer must provide employees with written, itemized pay statements every payday. Each pay statement must contain specific information. See Pay Statement Requirements.
  • In Colorado, the timing of when final wages must be paid to a terminated employee depends on whether the employee is fired or quit. An employer is not required to pay out accrued vacation pay on termination of employment, but if it does, then it must pay out all accrued vacation pay that is earned and determinable according to the terms of any agreement or policy. An employer must comply with the Colorado Wage Protection Act when paying final wages. Penalties may be imposed for noncompliance. See Termination Pay.
  • After the death of an employee, an employer must follow a specific set of rules in order to properly turn over any compensation owed to the deceased employee's estate, surviving spouse or heirs. See Deceased Employee Wages.
  • Wages that are unclaimed for one year are considered abandoned property. An employer must file an annual report and remit the amount of the unclaimed wages to the Colorado Treasury Department. An employer must also provide advance notice to affected employees within a certain time period. Penalties may be imposed for noncompliance. See Unclaimed Wages.
  • Wage theft violations (e.g., nonpayment of wages or overtime pay) will be released by the Department of Labor and Employment, Division of Labor Standards and Statistics (DLSS), to the public and may be used in a court proceeding, unless the DLSS determines that the information includes a trade secret. See Colorado Wage Theft Transparency Act.