2020 Colorado Revised Statutes
Title 24 - Government - State
Article 31. Department of Law
Section 24-31-101. Powers and duties of attorney general.

(1) The attorney general:

  1. Shall act as the chief legal representative of the state and be the legal counsel andadvisor of each department, division, office, board, commission, bureau, and agency of state government but shall not provide legal counsel to the legislative branch except for the state auditor in accordance with section 2-3-104.5;

  2. Shall appear for the state and prosecute and defend all actions and proceedings, civiland criminal, in which the state is a party or is interested when required to do so by the governor;

  3. Shall prosecute and defend for the state all causes in the appellate courts in which thestate is a party or is interested;

  4. Shall give his or her opinion in writing upon all questions of law submitted to theattorney general by the:

  1. General assembly, or either the house of representatives or the senate;

  2. Governor;

  3. Lieutenant governor;

  4. Secretary of state;

  5. State treasurer;

  6. Executive director of the department of revenue; or(VII) Commissioner of education.

  1. Shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the relevant district attorney over part 3 ofarticle 120 of title 12;

  2. May appoint deputy attorneys general and assistant attorneys general for the efficientadministration and supervision of department divisions and offices specified in section 24-31102;

  3. May, at his or her sole discretion, appoint special assistant attorneys general to provide legal services to state agencies except as otherwise provided in section 24-31-111 (5);

  4. Shall, at the request of the governor, secretary of state, state treasurer, executivedirector of the department of revenue, or commissioner of education, prosecute and defend all suits relating to matters connected with their departments;

  5. May bring civil and criminal actions to enforce state laws, including actions broughtpursuant to the "Colorado Antitrust Act of 1992" in article 4 of title 6, the "Colorado Consumer Protection Act" in article 1 of title 6, the "Unfair Practices Act" in article 2 of title 6, article 12 of title 6, and sections 6-1-110, 11-51-603.5, 24-34-505.5, and 25.5-4-306;

  6. Shall have the powers, duties, and functions as are prescribed for heads of principaldepartments in the "Administrative Organization Act of 1968", article 1 of this title 24;

  7. May make rules, pursuant to section 24-4-103, as may be necessary to carry out theduties imposed upon him or her by law;

  8. When required, shall prepare drafts for contracts, forms, and other writings that maybe required for the use of the state;

  9. Upon request of any employee in the state personnel system, shall represent suchemployee in any civil action or administrative proceeding instituted against such employee, either in the employee's official or individual capacity if the action or proceeding arises out of performance of the employee's official duties as determined by the attorney general and if the action or proceeding has not been brought by the state personnel director or the appointing authority of the employee seeking dismissal or other disciplinary action; except that the attorney general shall not represent any such employee in an action brought under section 24-50.5-105;

  10. Shall, pursuant to section 24-30-1507, represent expert witnesses and consultantsdescribed in section 24-30-1510 (3)(h); and

  11. Shall keep in proper books a record of all official opinions and a register of all actions prosecuted or defended by him or her and of all proceedings had in relation thereto and the status of pending matters in his or her office, which books or registers the attorney general shall deliver to his or her successor. Publication of opinions or other material circulated in quantity outside the executive branch must be issued in accordance with section 24-1-136.

  1. The general assembly hereby recognizes and reaffirms that the attorney general hasall powers conferred by statute and by common law in accordance with section 2-4-211 regarding all trusts established for charitable, educational, religious, or benevolent purposes.

  2. The attorney general may bring a civil action to enforce the provisions of section 2431-113.

  3. The attorney general may bring a civil action to enforce the provisions of section 2431-307 (2) or a criminal action to enforce the provisions of section 24-31-307 (3).

Source: L. 41: § 79, § 49. CSA: C. 3, § 49. CRS 53: § 3-9-1. C.R.S. 1963: § 3-9-1. L. 64: p. 119, § 15. L. 65: p. 144, § 1. L. 75: (1)(a) amended, p. 215, § 45, effective July 16. L. 77:

(1)(e) added, p. 1183, § 1, effective May 26; (1)(a) and (1)(b) amended, p. 263, § 2, effective June 2. L. 79: (4) amended, p. 968, § 3, effective June 15. L. 81: (5) added, p. 1166, § 1, effective May 26; (1)(f) added, p. 671, § 3, effective July 1; (2) repealed, p. 339, § 2, effective July 1. L. 83: (1)(c) amended, p. 835, § 43, effective July 1. L. 94: (6) added, p. 565, § 11, effective April 6. L. 2004: (4.5) added, p. 620, § 2, effective July 1. L. 2006: (1)(f) amended, p. 762, § 22, effective July 1. L. 2014: (4.7) added, (HB 14-1380), ch. 376, p. 1794, § 4, effective July 1. L. 2016: (1)(a), (1)(b), (1)(c), (1)(d), (3), and (4) amended, (HB 16-1094), ch. 94, p. 263, § 1, effective August 10. L. 2019: (1)(f) amended, (HB 19-1172), ch. 136, p. 1688, § 127, effective October 1. L. 2020: (3) and (4) added, (SB 20-217), ch. 110, p. 457, § 9, effective June 19; entire section R&RE, (SB 20-063), ch. 12, p. 49, § 2, effective September 14.

Editor's note: Amendments to this section by SB 20-063 and SB 20-217 were harmonized.

Cross references: (1) For legal services provided by the office of the attorney general to the board of assessment appeals, see § 39-2-127 (3); for the salary of the attorney general, see § 24-9-101; for discretionary funds of the attorney general, see § 24-9-105; for the election of the attorney general, see § 3 of art. IV, Colo. Const., and § 1-4-204.

(2) For the legislative declaration in SB 20-217, see section 1 of chapter 110, Session Laws of Colorado 2020.

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