• 09 Feb 2022
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Ban-The-Box & Fair Hiring Laws By State

We update this overview of ban-the-box rules often. But laws change quickly, and we cannot guarantee all information is current. Always consult your attorney for legal advice.

Ban-the-box compliance, targeted screens, and individualized assessments apply only when taking adverse action due to criminal records. They are not required when taking adverse action based on non-criminal records.


Who must follow: This ban-the-box law applies only to state agencies and licensing agencies in Colorado.

Timing of inquiry: State agencies and licensing agencies may not perform a background check until the agency determines that the candidate is a finalist for the position, or until after the candidate has received a conditional offer of employment. Exceptions apply when a statute bars licensing based on convictions and for certain public safety or correction-related jobs.

Adverse action implications:

  • When considering adverse action on the basis of a candidate’s criminal history (including expunged, sealed, or pardoned convictions or charges dismissed pursuant to deferred judgment), state or licensing agencies must consider the nature of the conviction, the relevance of the conviction to the job, evidence of the candidate’s rehabilitation and good conduct, and the age of the offense.
  • The law prohibits agencies from using arrests not leading to conviction when deciding whether to deny employment. Pending cases may be considered.

Job Advertisement Requirements:

  • State agencies and licensing agencies may not include blanket bans of candidates with criminal records in job advertisements, unless a statute prohibits the employment of a personal with a specific criminal conviction for a particular position.


Who must follow: This ban-the-box law applies to private employers in Colorado. Employers with 11 or more employees must comply by September 1, 2019. All employers must comply by September 1, 2021. Exceptions apply for positions where the law prohibits a person with a particular criminal history from being employed in a particular job and where an employer is required by law to conduct a criminal background check for the particular position.

Timing of inquiry: Private employers may not inquire into or require disclosure of an applicant’s criminal history on the initial employment application. However, an employer may obtain the publicly available criminal background report of an applicant at any time. Additionally, employers may not ban candidates with criminal histories from applying for a position.

Adverse action implications: None



Who must follow: This ban-the-box law applies only if you are a public sector employer for the City or County of Denver.

Timing of inquiry: Public sector employers for the City or County of Denver may only inquire into criminal history after a conditional offer has been made.

Adverse action implications:

  • Pre-adverse action: The pre-adverse action process must inform the applicant of the specific parts of the background check that may lead to final adverse action.
  • Individualized assessment: Employers covered by this law must conduct an individualized assessment prior to sending a final adverse action notice.

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