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WCAG 2.0 level AA requires a contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1 for normal text and 3:1 for large text. This means that light text can not be used on a white background.
Large text is defined as 14 point (typically 18.66px) and bold or larger, or 18 point (typically 24px) or larger.
WebAIM, a web accessibility solutions company, has a free online contrast checker. Simply set the foreground and background colors, and the checker will automatically provide a pass/fail grade.
WebAIM Contrast Checker