A shutdown furlough is an unplanned or emergency event when there is a lapse in appropriations (funding). When an agency no longer has the funds necessary to operate, they must shutdown those activities that are not excepted under the Antideficiency Act. This can occur at the beginning of a fiscal year if no funds have been appropriated for that year, or upon expiration of a continuing resolution if a new continuing resolution or appropriations law is not passed. Federal employees may be familiar with these types of furloughs from previous years in which the government has faced a potential shutdown.
Employees may be "exempt" from the shutdown furlough because they are not paid from annually appropriated funds (e.g., Non-Appropriated Funds or Working Capital Funds).
Employees may be "excepted" from a shutdown furlough by law because they are (1) performing or supporting the performance of emergency work involving the safety of human life or the protection of property, (2) involved in the orderly suspension of agency operations, or (3) performing other functions exempted from the furlough. An "excepted" employee may be required to work in a non-pay status during the furlough period, but will be paid when Congress passes, and the President signs, a new appropriation or continuing resolution.
Advance notification of a shutdown furlough is not required. Employees affected by the shutdown furlough must report to work on their first regularly scheduled day after the date that funding expires to conduct an orderly shutdown and receive communication on the furlough.
Department of Defense
Department of the Navy
Office of Personnel Management
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