An overview of tipping laws in Colorado

| Dec 17, 2020 | Wage & Hour Pay Disputes |

Many people in Littleton who work in the service industry rely on tips to supplement their wages. Therefore, it is important that they understand their rights when it comes to tipping under Colorado wage and hour laws.

Who is a tipped employee?

The Colorado Overtime and Minimum Pay Standards Order #36 defines who counts as a tipped employee for legal purposes. A tipped employee is any worker who customarily and regularly is tipped more than $30 per month. This includes tips left on credit card charge slips.

Tips and the minimum wage

Per COMPS order #36, if an worker is considered a tipped employee they must be paid a minimum cash wage of $8.98 or more per hour. If the employer’s wages of $8.98 per hour plus the worker’s tips do not meet Colorado’s minimum wage of $12.00 per hour when computed over a seven-day workweek, it is up to the employer to make up the difference in the worker’s cash wages.

Tip pooling

While employers are prohibited by Colorado wage law from keeping or controlling a worker’s tips, they can require tip pooling in which workers share tips on a pre-established bases as long as the employer notifies patrons of their establishment of the tip pooling policy in writing. If an employer requires that tip pooling in their establishment include workers who are not customarily tipped, the tip credit towards minimum wage is nullified for these workers.

Tipping violations and wage and hour laws

Tipping violations may mean that the aggrieved worker can pursue a claim under Colorado’s wage and hour laws. This post does not contain legal advice pertaining to any specific worker’s situation. Workers who believe their employer violated state tipping laws may want to work with an employment law attorney to learn more about their legal rights and options.