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Colorado Child Labor Law

by on
in Employment Law,Human Resources

Besides the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, Colorado employers must also comply with the state’s child labor law, administered by the Colorado Division of Labor (www.coworkforce.com/lab).

State law prohibits minors under 16 years of age to work during school hours or more than six hours on any day prior to a school day. Only baby sitters may work between 9:30 pm and 5 am.

Generally, minors may not work more than 40 hours per week and no more than eight hours in any 24-hour period. (Agricultural workers age 14 and older may work up to 12 hours in a 24-hour period or 30 hours in any 72-hour period during harvest time. But they may not work more than eight hours for 10 days in any 30-day period.)

Minors age 9 and older may perform the following types of work:

  • Delivery of handbills, advertising and advertising samples
  • Shoeshining
  • Gardening and lawn care involving no power-driven lawn equipment
  • Cleaning of walks involving no power-driven snow removal equipment
  • Casual, nonhazardous work in the employer’s home
  • Caddying on golf courses
  • Other similar nonhazardous occupations

Minors age 12 and older may also work in these types of jobs:

  • Sale and delivery of periodicals, door-to-door selling and delivery of merchandise
  • Baby-sitting
  • Gardening and lawn care involving power-driven lawn equipment
  • Cleaning of walks involving power-driven snow removal equipment
  • Agricultural work that’s permitted under the federal law
  • Other similar occupations

Minors age 14 or older may also work in these jobs:

  • Nonhazardous manufacturing operations
  • Public messenger service and errands by foot, bicycle and public transportation
  • Elevator operators
  • Janitorial work
  • Office and clerical work
  • Warehousing and storage, including loading and unloading vehicles
  • Nonhazardous construction and repair work with vehicle operation, as allowed by federal law
  • Retail food service
  • Gas stations, with limits on auto repair work and vehicle operation
  • Retail merchandise and grocery stores
  • Restaurants, hotels, motels and other public accommodations, but not operating power slicing or grinding equipment
  • Parks and recreation
  • Other similar occupations

Minors age 16 and older may do any work approved for younger workers but also may operate a motor vehicle. But they’re prohibited from working in hazardous occupations such as:

  • High-pressure steam or boiler operation
  • Work involving the risk of falling from more than 10 feet above the ground (20 feet for agricultural work)
  • Manufacturing, transporting or storing explosives
  • Mining logging, oil drilling or quarrying
  • Any job involving exposure to radioactive substances or iodizing radiation
  • Operating power-driven machinery such as woodworking machines, metal-forming machines, punching or shearing machines, bakery machines, paper products machines, shears, automatic pin-setting machines or other similar machinery
  • Slaughterhouses or meat-packing plants
  • Brick or clay product manufacturing
  • Wrecking or demolition
  • Roofing
  • Excavation
  • Other similar occupations

You can access more information about Colorado’s child labor law at www.coworkforce.com/lab/YouthAct.pdf. To review the federal child labor rules, go to www.youthrules.dol.gov.

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