How Long Should the Flag Be Flown at Half Mast?

A half mast flag should be flown from sunrise to sunset for the durations of the order.

1 National Days of Remembrance

Flags will be flown at half mast on National Days of Remembrance
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National days of remembrance regarding military events like Patriot Day, Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day and Memorial Day typically carry a half-mast, or half-staff, order. With the exception of Memorial Day, when the half-mast order ends at noon, the American flag is at half-staff from sunrise until sunset on the days of the order.

2 Presidential Proclamation

The President can dictate flags be flown at half mast.
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The U.S. President can dictate by proclamation when, and for how long, the American flag is flown at half-mast. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the flag should fly at half-staff for 30 days following the death of a current or former president, and for 10 days after the death of the vice president and other government officials.

3 Bottom Line

US Flag at half mast.
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For a half-mast order issued for a day of remembrance, the flag flies accordingly between sunrise and sunset for only that day. For a Presidential proclamation, the event leading to the order will dictate the number of days the flag will fly; but the sunrise-to-sunset rule remains in effect.

Lila Rose has worked as a freelance writer since 2005. With a focus on home and family topics, her articles appear on eHow and Answerbag. Rose received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Kansas.