Those who continue to work during a furlough because of the nature of their jobs are guaranteed they will be paid later. Also, Congress early in the 2013 shutdown passed a bill guaranteeing that those who were furloughed would get back pay as if they had worked, as well. That has been the consistent practice in similar shutdowns over the years but a bill to provide pay for those furloughed has to be passed each time and there are no guarantees. How long it would take for employees to receive pay due them following the shutdown’s end would depend on how long it lasted and how that period fell within a pay cycle. OMB estimated that the pay for time not worked cost the government $2 billion in salary with the value of associated benefits another $500 million. The shutdown furloughs were the second round of furloughs in 2013; in the spring and summer of that year, employees of many agencies also were required to take off several days or more without pay due to “sequestration” spending caps. There was no back pay for those furloughs.
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