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Colorado Legal Holidays Laws

Days set aside by the state or federal government to honor a holiday or historical person or to commemorate an important event are known as legal holidays. Not all holidays are considered legal holidays, just those on which government employees are given paid days off or paid extra for working. Private employers are not required to offer holiday compensation, but often do so for full-time employees. Finally, state legal holiday laws must recognize federally observed holidays, but may add additional observances.

What are Colorado's Legal Holidays?

In addition to legal holidays recognized by federal law, Colorado also allows state employees to observe Caesar Chavez Day on March 31 in lieu of another legally observed holiday. State employees either get a paid day off, an alternate day off, or premium holiday pay (if they work).

See the chart below for a code reference and the dates of Colorado's legally recognized holidays.

Code Section 24-11-101
Holidays New Year's Day (January 1); Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday (3rd Monday in January); Washington-Lincoln Day (3rd Monday in Febuary); Memorial Day (Last Monday in May); Independence Day (July 4); Columbus Day (2nd Monday in October); Veterans Day (November 11); Thanksgiving (4th Thursday in November); Christmas (December 25); Labor Day (1st Monday in September); Caesar Chavez Day (March 31 -- Optional paid day off for state employees in lieu of any other legal holiday occuring on a weekday.)

Note: State laws are constantly changing, usually through new legislation, ballot initiative, or judicial review. Although we make every effort to maintain the accuracy of our state laws pages, you may also want to contact a Colorado employment law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Are You Owed Holiday Pay?

Even if you're not a state or federal employee, your employer is required to honor the terms of the employment contract. If you are not given a paid holiday or premium pay for working on a holiday -- violating the terms of your contract -- then you may have a legal claim. See FindLaw's Wage and Hour Laws section for additional articles and resources.

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Colorado Legal Holiday Laws: Related Resources

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