On June 15, 2015, in a 6-0 opinion, the Colorado Supreme Court provided its long-awaited ruling in Coats v. Dish Network, LLC (PDF). The Court affirmed the Colorado Court of Appeals’ decision below, and held that because marijuana is a Schedule I banned substance under federal law, it is not a “lawful” off-duty activity under Colorado law. Therefore, employers such as Dish Network, LLC may terminate employees who test positive for tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”), a component of marijuana, in violation of a company’s drug policy.

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Pen Signing.jpgOn April 19, 2013, Governor John Hickenlooper signed into law SB 13-018, otherwise known as “the Employment Opportunity Act.” The Employment Opportunity Act prohibits employers from obtaining and using consumer credit information for employment purposes unless the credit information is “substantially related” to the position.

Currently, there are only 8 other states where employment protections have been adopted for individuals who may have fallen on hard economic times, including California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington.


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iStock_000017765581_ExtraSmall.jpgEmployers take note of a slew of employment law changes in 2013, including new I-9 forms, new FMLA posters and forms, and new FCRA forms.

New I-9 Forms

Effective May 7, 2013, new Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9s are required. The new forms are available from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website at:http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/i-9.pdf. The new I-9 form was published on March 8, 2013 and must be in place and used by employers starting in May 2013.

New FMLA Poster & Forms

Effective March 8, 2013, employers must post the new Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) poster and use updated FMLA notice and certification forms. The Department of Labor’s (DOL) model forms can be found on the DOL website at: http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/2013rule/militaryforms.htm.


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While many Coloradoans are taking advantage of their last few ski days of the season, the Colorado legislature has been busy passing new, groundbreaking legislation with respect to civil unions and the use of individual credit histories in employment decisions. How will this new legislation affect employers? Read on.


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iStock_000017567956_ExtraSmall.jpgPercolating since last year, Colorado’s Employment Opportunity Act has resurfaced in early 2013 and may be on the road to passage.  Known as SB13-018, or Senate Bill 18, the Employment Opportunity Act recently passed its third reading in the Senate on February 12, 2013 (final vote, 20 in favor: 15 opposed) and now is before the House. Employers take note – if passed, the Employment Opportunity Act WILL affect the use of credit checks in employment decisions in Colorado, from hiring decisions to running background checks on existing employees.


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