Agencies are encouraged to promote part time career employment opportunities in order to accommodate persons with disabilities, those with certain family responsibilities, those recovering from illnesses, those pursuing an education and others who wish to work less than a full-time schedule. Permanent part time federal jobs follow a career or career-conditional appointment or a permanent appointment in the excepted service and works between 16 and 32 hours each week (or between 32 and 64 hours a pay period) on a prearranged schedule.

There is no law or regulation that limits part-time employment to specific jobs or grade levels. Any job may be filled by a part-time employee or a team of job sharers when the arrangement meets the needs of the organization and the employee. To meet the needs of the office or the employee, an agency may temporarily or permanently change the hours of a part-time employee. However, generally part-timers have schedules within the 16 to 32 hour-per-week range.


Part Time Federal Jobs Eligible for Full Benefits

Part-time employees under permanent appointments are eligible for the same benefits as full-time employees, with certain special considerations relating to eligibility, coverage, and other limitations.

Gross pay is computed by multiplying the employee’s hourly rate of basic pay by the number of hours worked during the pay period. Except for certain employees on alternative work schedules, overtime rates apply only to the hours in excess of eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. Non-overtime hours above those normally scheduled are paid at the basic rate of pay.

Part-time employees earn annual and sick leave on a prorated basis depending on the number of hours worked per pay period. An employee with less than three years of service earns one hour of annual leave for each 20 hours worked; with three but less than 15 years of service, the employee earns one hour for each 13 hours worked; and with 15 or more years of service earns one hour for each 10 hours worked.

Part-time employees earn one hour of sick leave for each 20 hours worked. They are also eligible for other kinds of leave and are covered by the rules governing the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Federal Employees Family-Friendly Leave Act.


If a holiday falls on a day the employee normally works, the employee is paid for the number of hours he or she was scheduled to work, not to exceed eight hours, except for an employee on a compressed work schedule. A part-time employee is not entitled to a holiday that falls on a day the employee is not normally scheduled to work.

Part-time work is prorated for determining qualification requirements. For example, an employee who works 20 hours a week would receive credit for six months of experience at the end of 12 months of work.

Part-time employees who participate in the Federal Employees Health Benefits program receive the same coverage as full-time employees but pay a greater percentage of the premium because the government’s share is prorated based on the number of hours the employee is scheduled to work each week. For example, an employee on a 20-hour-per-week schedule receives one-half the government contribution towards the premium.


A part-time employee is eligible to participate in the Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance program. The amount of insurance for which an employee is eligible is based on the part-time employee’s annual salary applicable to his or her tour of duty.


In a reduction-in-force (RIF), part-time employees compete separately from full-time employees. A part-time employee can compete only for other part-time jobs and has no assignment rights to full-time positions. Similarly, a full-time employee has assignment rights only to full-time positions and cannot displace a part-time employee.

Part-time employees have the same rights as full-time employees when disciplinary actions or performance-based actions are taken against them. Adverse and/or performance-based actions include suspensions, removals, furloughs, and reductions in grade. A reduction in scheduled hours is not subject to adverse action procedures.

A part-time employee earns a full year of service for each calendar year worked (regardless of schedule) for the purpose of computing dates for the following: retirement eligibility; career tenure; completion of probationary period; within-grade pay increases; change in leave category; and time-in-grade restrictions on advancement.