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Minimum Wage in Colorado 2023

Last Updated on:

06 January 2023
Minimum Wage In Colorado

Every employee is legally entitled to a minimum wage, the minimum compensation a business is obligated to pay employees. In the early 20th century, most countries introduced the minimum wage law to enact employee rights that cover all companies and employees across the country.

The minimum wage may vary from country to country only for its workers. But the main fact is that it can be different in different states inside a country. 

This article is based on the Colorado State Minimum Wage and relevant information. So, whether you ask about the minimum wage in Colorado or search for information on working purposes, go through the article till the end. You will get the detailed information you need on minimum wage in Colorado.

What is the Minimum Wage in Colorado?

Currently, in 2023, the minimum wage in the state of Colorado is $13.65 per hour, which is $6.40$ more than the Federal minimum wage. In Colorado, most nonexempt workers, such as retail workers, commercial service providers, medical workers, and food industry employees, are entitled to the minimum wage. But the regulation may vary for the exceptions that include tipped employees, student workers, or other exempt job employees.

Furthermore, in 2023, the minimum wage for tipped employees is $10.63 per hour. However, according to their wage laws, it can be different in particular countries, cities, and towns. Let's say one example of Denver as an instance, where the current minimum wage is $17.29 per hour, and hopefully, it will be increased by the following year. 

Weekly Minimum Wage

A person in Colorado can earn $546 a week, which is the minimum weekly wage considering that the person would have to work 40 hours a week to make this.

How is Colorado Minimum Wage Different from the Federal Minimum Wage?

According to the law of state minimum wage and federal minimum wage, an employee covered under these laws should get the state's higher minimum wage. Currently, the Federal Minimum Wage is 7.25$ per hour, whereas the state of Colorado’s in 2023 is 13.65$ per hour. So apparently, the federal minimum wage is almost half compared to the minimum wage in Colorado.

Furthermore, the federal minimum wage for tipped employees is set at  2.13$, whereas the state minimum wage is 10.63$ for tipped employees in Colorado.

Based on the scenario, the Colorado law of 2023 declares that all workers, including nonexempt and tipped employees, will get the minimum wage from the covered employers in Colorado.

Rules for Tips in Colorado

Employers can sometimes legally force employees to contribute to the tip pool. After depositing their tips, eligible employees are given an equal distribution of the funds pooled together. It is common practice to determine the amount of a gratuity based on the number of hours worked or shifts finished. It is against the rules to share tips from the pool with employers.

No of how much more an employee makes in tips overall, they are still required to be paid the full minimum wage. Even if an employee receives money from the tip pool, they must still be paid the minimum wage. This is the case even if the person gets tips infrequently.

Keeping track of employees' earnings is essential to guarantee they are paid at least the minimum wage. Employers must ensure that employees are receiving at least the required minimum wage. Please remember that commission and service charges do not, in most cases, count toward gratuities to calculate the minimum wage. Setting up a reporting system that accounts for cash and credit tips is one way to verify the accuracy of wage payments, financial documents, and tax amounts. It can be made by placing a system that considers tips received via credit card.

Local Minimum Wages in Colorado

According to the minimum wage laws, any particular country, city, or town can set its minimum wage for the covered employees. Therefore, Denver, a Colorado town, set its minimum wage at $17.29, which is $6.66 higher than the state minimum wage.

Note that, Local employees of Denver will be covered by the local minimum wage and receive priority as it sets a higher minimum wage than the federal or state government. 

History of Minimum Wage in Colorado

The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics is responsible for calculating and publishing the minimum wage inflation for Colorado. They consider two years' minimum wage rate, one mid-year to the following mid-year, to calculate the inflation and post it by September of a year.

Therefore, 2021's minimum wage is counted as the one for 2022, which is increased by inflation from mid-2020 to 2021.


Minimum Wage

Minimum Wage for Tipped Employee

Increment Rate from the Previous Year









































































Who is Exempt From Receiving Minimum Wage?

The following categorized employees who are exempt from receiving the minimum wage in Colorado include-

1. Executive Exemption

The executive exemption of employees requires the following criteria that include -

  • Monthly-salary-based paid employees
  • Supervisor
  • Recruiting Manager
  • Spend a minimum of 50% time supervising a project

2. Administrative Exemption

This category contains the employees who work as-

  • Monthly-salary-based paid employees
  • Executives
  • Those who contribute to a project through critical thinking and decision-making.

3. Professional Exemption

This category includes the employees who are- 

  • Monthly-salary-based paid employees
  • Full-time employees under a project

4. Outside Salesman Exemption

This category includes the employees who:

  • Work outside of the business place
  • Work on a target-based job like making sales or obtaining orders

5. Computer Employee Exemption

  • Computer system analyst
  • Programmer
  • Software engineer


1. Are there any laws to protect employees from exploitation in the workplace?

Legal protections exist in Colorado to prevent discrimination and harassment in the workplace and in the selection process. This means that age, sex, race, national origin, pregnancy, handicap, or marital status cannot be used as criteria for hiring, limiting opportunities, segregating groups, or otherwise classifying people.

2. What is the Keep Jobs Act of Colorado?

The state of Colorado has proposed a bill known as the Keep Jobs in Colorado Act, with the goals of improving the state's employment rates and providing financial assistance to Colorado employees. This act sets the regulation for public projects in Colorado which are sponsored in a certain manner by the state, municipalities, school districts, or localities of Colorado, eighty percent of the labor must originate from employees residing in Colorado. In situations in which there is an insufficient supply of labor in Colorado or when adhering to this rule will prevent a project from getting completed.

Josh Evan

Written by:

Josh Evan

Josh Evan is the professional career counselor and career development writer at When Work Works. He loves to see people from this field succeed through initiating the right thing in the right way. He never tells; he shows the way. We appointed John not because of his impressive CV. It was his counseling charisma which stood out of everything. He can implant idea, confidence and productive thoughts into mind almost effortlessly. His pen and mouth both speak for the greater good.

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