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HRDG 4610 - Tours of Duty - Section F

Subchapter 4610
Tours of Duty

Section F - Scheduling Days Off for Federal Holidays


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Federal Holidays
Holiday: Date:
New Year's Day January 1
Martin Luther King Jr's Birthday Third Monday in January
President's Day Third Monday in February
Memorial Day Last Monday in May
Independence Day July 4
Labor Day First Monday in September
Columbus Day Second Monday in October
Veteran's Day November 11
Thanksgiving Day Fourth Thursday in November
Christmas Day December 25
Special Holidays
  • Inauguration Day (for Washington, D.C., Metropolitan area only).
  • Any day designated a holiday by Federal Statute or Executive Order.
Full-time Employees Employees will not report to work on Federal holidays unless required to do so by their supervisor. Days off for Federal holidays for full-time employees are scheduled as follows:
When a holiday falls on : Then the holiday will be observed on:
Any day of the employee's basic workweek That day.
An employee's nonworkday On the previous work day.
Full-time Employees on First-40-Hour Tours

First-40-hour employees must have their basic workweek scheduled before the start of the administrative workweek. Although the basic workweek is considered the first 40 hours worked, the supervisor or manager must establish the specific days of the week on which the hours will be worked. Employees must have at least one scheduled day off per week, preferably two.

In every case the 8-hour holiday becomes part of the employee's 40-hour tour of duty. A supervisor may not reschedule a basic workweek for the primary purpose of either including or excluding a holiday from the basic first 40 hours.

Days Off for Holidays for First-40-Hour Full-time Employees

Days off for holidays will be scheduled as follows: 


When a holiday falls on: Then:
Any day of the employee's basic workweek That day is designated as the holiday.
Sunday and the basic workweek does not include Sunday The subsequent workday is designated as the holiday.
Saturday and the basic workweek does not include Saturday The preceding workday is designated as the holiday.
A workday other than the scheduled holiday and the employee is prevented from working on that day That day becomes the employee's holiday. *


* Example: A holiday falls on Saturday but regular full-time employees are given Friday off as their holiday. The office is closed on Friday so a first-40-hour employee whose tour of duty is Tuesday through Saturday is prevented from working on Friday. Friday becomes his/her holiday and he/she reports for work on Saturday.The employee will receive regular compensation (not holiday pay) for Saturday.

Part-time Employees

A part-time employee is entitled to be excused from work on any holiday that falls on a day included in the regularly scheduled tour of duty.

A part-time employee is not entitled to a day off when a holiday falls on one of the nonworkdays. Therefore, there is no “in lieu of” holiday for part-time employees.

If a part-time employee is prevented from working, due to a holiday, or some day other than the holiday, the day the employee is prevented from working will be the holiday. An employee does not receive 2 days off because he/she ,may be prevented from working on a day other than the holiday.

Example: If Saturday is the holiday and the employee is scheduled to work both on Friday and Saturday but is prevented from working on Friday, then Friday is deemed to be the holiday and not Saturday. In this case, he/she is excused from work on Friday but must work on Saturday.

Determining "In Lieu of" Holidays for Full-time Employees on Flexible or Compressed Work Schedules

For the purpose of statutes relating to pay and leave of employees, with respect to a legal public holiday and any other day declared to be a holiday by Federal statute or Executive order, the following applies:

  • Nonworkdays Other Than Sunday - If a holiday falls on a nonworkday of the employee (except for holidays falling on a Sunday nonworkday) the employee's preceding workday will be the designated “in lieu of” holiday (5 U.S.C. 6103).
  • Sunday Nonworkday - If the holiday falls on the Sunday nonworkday of an employee, the subsequent workday will be the employee's designated “in lieu of” holiday. (Section 3, Executive Order 11582, February 11, 1971).
  • Part-time employees - Part-time employees are not entitled to an “in lieu of” holiday when a holiday falls on a nonworkday for the employee (5 CFR 610.405).


Exception: The Administrator of an agency may prescribe rules under which a different “in lieu of” holiday is designated than would be required under 5 U.S.C. 6103(b), E.O. 11582, or the terms of any collective bargaining agreement, for full-time employees on compressed work schedules when it is determined that a different “in lieu of “ holiday is necessary to prevent an “adverse Agency impact.”

Adverse Agency Impact (5 U.S.C. 6131[b]) means the following:

  • Reduction of productivity of the agency;
  • A diminished level of services furnished to the public by the agency; or
  • An increase in the cost of agency operations(other than a reasonable administrative cost relating to the process of establishing a flexible or compressed work schedule).


An employee may not elect to move his/her nonworkday to another day of the week, nor may an employee be required to move his/her regularly scheduled off day solely to change holiday pay/leave entitlements.

Holidays for Employees on Maxiflex Schedules

Employees who emulate compressed schedules under maxiflex must reschedule their tour for any pay period in which a holiday falls on their scheduled day off. Employees may not schedule a day off on a holiday, but must instead select another day off (in conjunction with scheduling rules under maxiflex) should they choose to remain on the emulated compressed schedule for that pay period. In all cases the holiday will remain as the holiday. Full-time employees are only allowed 8 hours administrative leave for any holiday (5 USC 6124).

Example: Edie Employee has the following schedule under maxiflex:

  Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri
Week 1 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours
Week 2 Off 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 8 hours

During a certain pay period, a holiday occurs on the second Monday of the pay period. Edie reschedules her work for the pay period as follows: 


  Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri
Week 1 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours
Week 2 Holiday (8 hours administrative leave) 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours Off

Edie may also choose to work 1 hour longer on another day to still have an 8 hour day on Friday.
  Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri
Week 1 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 9 hours 8 hours
Week 2 Holiday (8 hours administrative leave) 9 hours 9 hours 10 hours Off
Holidays for Employees at Duty Posts Outside the United States Whenever Monday is designated as a holiday under 5 U.S.C. 6103(a), the first regularly scheduled workday in the week is the holiday for a Federal employee working overseas whose basic workweek includes Monday, but is not the typical Monday through Friday work schedule that is found in the U.S. This will have the effect of providing 3-day weekends (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) for employees working overseas whose basic workweek is Sunday through Thursday. (P.L. 105-261, Strom Thurmond National Defense Authorization Act, 1999, effective 10/17/98).

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