5 CFR § 300.603 - Coverage.
(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 nontemporary 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.
(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 nontemporary appointment in the executive branch within the previous 52 weeks.
(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.