Colorado Revised Statutes Title 8 Labor and Industry § 8-42-102 Basis of compensation--“wages” defined--average weekly wage--“at the time of injury” clarified




(1) The average weekly wage of an injured employee shall be taken as the basis upon which to compute compensation payments.

(2) Average weekly wages for the purpose of computing benefits provided in articles 40 to 47 of this title, except as provided in this section, shall be calculated upon the monthly, weekly, daily, hourly, or other remuneration which the injured or deceased employee was receiving at the time of the injury, and in the following manner;  except that any portion of such remuneration representing a per diem payment shall be excluded from the calculation unless such payment is considered wages for federal income tax purposes:

(a) Where the employee is being paid by the month for services under a contract of hire, the weekly wage shall be determined by multiplying the monthly wage or salary at the time of the accident by twelve and dividing by fifty-two.

(b) Where the employee is being paid by the week for services under a contract of hire, said weekly remuneration at the time of the injury shall be deemed to be the weekly wage for the purposes of articles 40 to 47 of this title.

(c) Where the employee is rendering service on a per diem basis, the weekly wage shall be determined by multiplying the daily wage by the number of days and fractions of days in the week during which the employee under a contract of hire was working at the time of the injury or would have worked if the injury had not intervened.

(d) Where the employee is being paid by the hour, the weekly wage shall be determined by multiplying the hourly rate by the number of hours in a day during which the employee was working at the time of the injury or would have worked if the injury had not intervened, to determine the daily wage;  then the weekly wage shall be determined from said daily wage in the manner set forth in paragraph (c) of this subsection (2).

(e) Where the employee is paid on a piecework, tonnage, commission, or basis other than a monthly, weekly, daily, or hourly wage and where the employment is but casual and in the usual course of the trade, business, profession, or occupation of his employer, the total amount earned by the injured or killed employee in the twelve months preceding the injury shall be computed, which sum shall be divided by the number of pay periods the injured person was employed during the twelve months immediately preceding the injury, and the result thus ascertained shall be considered the average wage of said employee per pay period.

(f) Where the employee is being paid by the mile, the weekly wage shall be determined by multiplying the rate per mile by the average number of miles per day the employee drove in the service of the employer in the sixty working days immediately preceding the date of the injury, to arrive at a daily wage;  then the weekly wage shall be determined from the said daily wage in the manner set forth in paragraph (c) of this subsection (2).  If, on the date of the injury, the employee has worked for the employer less than sixty days, the average daily wage shall be based on the average miles driven per working day during such period.

(3) Where the foregoing methods of computing the average weekly wage of the employee, by reason of the nature of the employment or the fact that the injured employee has not worked a sufficient length of time to enable earnings to be fairly computed thereunder or has been ill or has been self-employed or for any other reason, will not fairly compute the average weekly wage, the division, in each particular case, may compute the average weekly wage of said employee in such other manner and by such other method as will, in the opinion of the director based upon the facts presented, fairly determine such employee's average weekly wage.

(4) Where an employee is a minor and the disability is temporary, the average weekly wage of such minor shall be determined by the division as in cases of disability of adults.  Where the disability of such minor is permanent or if benefits under articles 40 to 47 of this title accrue because of the death of such minor, compensation to said minor or death benefits to said minor's dependents shall be paid at the maximum rate of compensation payable under said articles at the time of the determination of such permanency or of such death.

(5)(a) The general assembly hereby finds that the phrase “at the time of injury” in subsection (2) of this section refers to the date of the employee's accident.  When subsection (2) of this section is used to determine a worker's average weekly wage, the wage on the date of the accident shall be used.

(b) Nothing in this subsection (5) alters the discretion of the division or the director to fairly determine a worker's average weekly wage in accordance with subsection (3) of this section.





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