The State of Colorado offers laws and guidance for the residents of the Centennial State for a great many things, but they do not get specific about when a child can be left 'home alone'.

This big decision is left for each family to determine on their own. At what age is it ok to leave a child home alone, and what kinds of questions can help you make the best decision?

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Legally, There is No Standard Age in Colorado

Sorry, Mom and Dad, this decision is up to you. The state of Colorado did not select an age a child needs to reach before they can be left home alone. While this creates a gray area, it may be best for everyone that it is this way. Who better to determine your child's maturity and self-reliance than the parents? Scroll on to see some questions that can help determine this for you.

Colorado's Legal Age Limit for Paid Labor

While the state of Colorado offers no specific age that a child must reach before they can be left unsupervised, the lowest age a child can be employed for a daycare position is 12 years old. If you are hiring a babysitter to watch your kids, that individual must be at least 12 years old. Is 12 the right age for them to be left home alone? Colorado for Kids offers a helpful suggestion below.

Colorado for Kids Offers Some Guidance

Part of raising children is making sure there is always appropriate supervision for a child or in some circumstances, a parent could be charged with neglect. The state of Colorado generally accepts that the ages of 10 to 12 are the right time (depending on the child) to leave them alone for shorter periods of time (1 to 2 hours).

Colorado for Kids suggests four questions you should ask yourself before considering leaving a child home alone...

  • Is your child able to take care of and protect themselves?
  • Can your child recognize danger and make sound decisions?
  • Are they ready? Will your child feel confident and safe or will they feel lonely or bored?
  • Does your child know what to do and who to call in the event an emergency arises?

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Gallery Credit: Wes Adams

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