What Is the Federal Pay Period Calendar?

The Federal Pay Period Calendar specifies the dates on which checks are distributed, pay periods come to a close and EFT payments are processed for employees of the federal government. It also specifies the beginning and end of each fiscal quarter, federal holidays, and time and attendance adjustments cut-off dates for those participating the ETAMS program.

The federal government provides all employees with an annual calendar that contains information regarding the beginning and end of each pay period along with their respective dates of pay. Dates of pay differ between those receiving live checks and those who use EFT, or Electronic Funds Transfer. For the 2015 calendar year, pay periods end every other Saturday, starting with January 10th, 2015. Live check pay dates are every other Wednesday beginning on January 7th, 2015, and EFT transfers are made every other Friday beginning January 2nd, 2015.

The calendar also specifies the beginning and end of each fiscal quarter, which contrary to many other quarterly systems is divided based on the number of weeks in the year rather than months. For example, the first quarter of 2015 ended on Saturday March 20th, 2015. The calendar includes paid federal holidays, of which there are 10, as well as cut-off dates for adjustments to be made to time and attendance, or T&A, records kept in ETAMS, or Electronic Time and Attendance Management System.

The General Services Administration produces the calendar that is generally released sometime between July and October of the preceding year. Six out of the calendars for the past 13 years have been released between September 24th and October 1st. The GSA released calendars for 2016 and 2017 on July 29th, 2015.