Q. If you are a GS-13, can you can get a temporary promotion to the next higher grade without having to wait 52 weeks? I have asked my personnel office this question and was told that’s not the case. I did my own research on the Office of Personnel Management website and don’t see any way that could happen.
A. Yes, you can be temporarily promoted to the next higher grade if you have fewer than 52 weeks at the next lower grade. However, for that to happen, you must meet one of the exception criteria spelled out in OPM regulations:
§ 300.603 (a) Coverage. This subpart applies to advancement to a General Schedule position in the competitive service by any individual who within the previous 52 weeks held a General Schedule position under non-temporary appointment in the competitive or excepted service in the executive branch, unless excluded by paragraph (b) of this section.
(b) Exclusions. The following actions may be taken without regard to this subpart but must be consistent with all other applicable requirements, such as qualification standards:
(1) Appointment based on selection from a competitive examination register of eligibles or under a direct hire authority.
(2) Noncompetitive appointment based on a special authority in law or Executive order (but not including transfer and reinstatement) made in accordance with all requirements applicable to new appointments under that authority.
(3) Advancement in accordance with part 335 of this chapter up to any General Schedule grade the employee previously held under non-temporary appointment in the competitive or excepted service.
(4) Advancement of an employee from a non-General Schedule position to a General Schedule position unless the employee held a General Schedule position under non-temporary appointment in the executive branch within the previous 52 weeks.
(5) Advancement of an individual whose General Schedule service during the previous 52 weeks has been totally under temporary appointment.
(6) Advancement of an employee under a training agreement established in accordance with OPM’s operating manuals. However, an employee may not receive more than two promotions in any 52-week period solely on the basis of one or more training agreements. Also, only OPM may approve a training agreement that provides for consecutive promotions at rates that exceed those permitted by § 300.604 of this part.
(7) Advancement to avoid hardship to an agency or inequity to an employee in an individual meritorious case but only with the prior approval of the agency head or his or her designee. However, an employee may not be promoted more than three grades during any 52-week period on the basis of this paragraph.
(8) Advancement when OPM authorizes it to avoid hardship to an agency or inequity to an employee in individual meritorious situations not defined, but consistent with the definitions, in § 300.602 of this part.