Updates on Colorado HELP Rules

On April 27, 2020, the Colorado Department of Labor (CDLE) expanded the Colorado Health Emergency Leave with Pay (HELP) Rules to include additional industries. The original Rules went in place on March 11, 2020, and has been periodically amended since then.

Since March 11, 2020, the Rules were amended to add coverage for:

  • an additional industry category, “retail establishments that sell groceries”; and
  • not just those “being tested” for COVID-19 (as in the original rules), but also those “under instructions from a health care provider to quarantine or isolate due to a risk of having COVID-19.”
  • an additional industry category, “food and beverage manufacturing.”

On April 27, 2020, pursuant to the Governor’s “Safer at Home” order, the Rules now are being adopted and amended to:

  • add coverage for all “retail establishments, real estate sales and leasing, offices and office work, elective medical, dental, and health services, personal care services (defined as hair, beauty, spas, massage, tattoos, pet care, or substantially similar services),”
  • expand the required paid leave from four days to “two weeks (up to a maximum of 80 hours) of paid sick leave at two-thirds of the employee’s regular rate of pay,” and
  • expand covered conditions (a) from “flu-like symptoms” to “flu-like or respiratory illness symptoms,” and (b) to cover quarantine or isolation instructions from not only “a health care provider” but also an “authorized government official,” and
  • provide that a negative test result terminates the paid leave, after the individual is asymptomatic for a sufficient period.

These Rules will remain in effect for the longer of (a) 30 days after adoption, or (b) the duration of the State of Disaster Emergency declared by the Governor, up to a maximum of 120 days after the adoption of these temporary rules. Interpreting the HELP Act is complicated. Please call our attorneys in the Colorado offices at Employers Council with questions.