Resigning during furlough


Q. I am a GS-15 with eight years of service. My entire office (including my senior manager) is on furlough. After the start of the furlough, I was offered and accepted a position in the private sector. My new employer understands the holding pattern federal employees are in and is being flexible on my start date in the new position. How do I resign during the furlough? Whom do I contact if I am prohibited from using my access to my federal information technology resources? Is there any advantage to waiting until the end of the furlough?

A. Nothing would prevent you from sending a certified letter of resignation to your supervisor at his or her work address, with a copy to the head of your servicing personnel office. Be sure to include your full name, position and series title, and date on which you want your employment to end. While your request may not be handled until the sequester is over, there is nothing that would prevent you from accepting the new position before your separation is official. Of course, waiting until your furlough ends would be a lot quicker and neater.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to


  1. Hello. I have a similar question. I am a GS-14 Treasury economist. I have been employed in Federal gov’t since 2003–including unused sick time, I have 16 years of service. I also have more than 6 weeks of unused vacation time.

    I expect to get an offer soon for a new job in private, possibly starting Feb. 18. I appreciate your advice above about sending a letter with notice. However, what’s the precedent for possibly having to come back to gov’t from a new position to do my close-out paperwork, return Federal property (laptop/ID), etc. Please advise.

Leave A Reply