Update applicable to:
All employers in Colorado and out-of-state employers with employees performing work in the state of Colorado
On June 2, 2023, Governor Jared Polis signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 23-017, which expands the qualifying reasons an employee may take leave under the Colorado Healthy Families and Workplaces Act (HFWA).
What are the details?
The amendments take effect on August 7, 2023. As of this date, Colorado employers will be required to allow eligible employees to use available paid sick leave under the HFWA for several newly covered reasons. The specific new covered reasons include when the employee needs to:
- Grieve, attend funeral services or a memorial, or deal with financial and legal matters that arise after the death of a covered family member
- Care for a family member whose school or place of care has been closed due to inclement weather, loss of power, loss of heating, loss of water, or other unexpected occurrence or event that results in the closure of the family member’s school or place of care
- Evacuate the employee’s place of residence due to inclement weather, loss of power, loss of heating, loss of water, or other unexpected occurrence or event that results in the need to evacuate the employee’s residence
In addition, the Colorado public health emergency leave (PHEL) benefit, which is also covered by the HFWA, will no longer be available for covered absences related to COVID-19 as of June 9, 2023.
For more information, please see the links below:
Colorado’s Healthy Families & Workplaces Act (HFWA)
What do employers need to do?
Colorado employers should review existing sick leave policies and either implement new policies or revise existing policies. Additionally, they should consider policies on attendance, anti-retaliation, conduct, and discipline for compliance with the amendments and update their sick leave poster on or before the effective date of the new law. Colorado is expected to publish an updated poster regarding these changes to the HFWA in the coming months. Employers should monitor the Colorado HFWA website for further information.
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