The following are legal public holidays:

  • New Year's Day, January 1
  • Martin Luther King's Birthday, 3rd Monday in January
  • Washington's Birthday, 3rd Monday in February
  • Memorial Day, last Monday in May
  • Independence Day, July 4
  • Labor Day, 1st Monday in September
  • Columbus Day, 2nd Monday in October
  • Veterans Day, November 11
  • Thanksgiving Day, 4th Thursday in November
  • Christmas Day, December 25
  • Inauguration Day, January 20 of each 4th year
    (for Metropolitan DC employees only)

There may be times when other days are declared to be holidays by Federal statute or Executive Order.
Employees who are excused from duty because a holiday falls within their basic workweek and regularly scheduled tour of duty are entitled to their basic rate of pay for that day. Employees who are required to work on a holiday within their basic workweek are entitled to premium pay.

For Federal employees who work a Monday through Friday schedule, when a holiday falls on Saturday (a nonworkday), the holiday is observed on the preceding Friday. As an example, Christmas Day, December 25, 1999 and New Years Day, January 1, 2000 fell on a Saturday. The preceding Friday was treated as a holiday for pay and leave purposes. When a holiday falls on Sunday (a nonworkday), the holiday is observed on Monday. As an example, Independence Day, July 4, 1999 fell on a Sunday. The following Monday (July 5) was treated as a holiday for pay and leave purposes.

For employees who do not work a Monday through Friday schedule, holidays are determined in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 6103(b)(2) and (d). Effective October 17, 1998, Section 1107 of Public Law 105-261 added a new provision to 5 U.S.C. 6103(b) which provides that 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. In these situations, the holiday will provide a 3-day weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) for employees working overseas whose basic workweek is Sunday through Thursday.

2013 List of Holidays posted on OPM website

Content last reviewed: 6/20/2006-FMJ

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This page was last revised: 10/15/2012