I see a LOT of questions about E1-E4 promotions. I was actually backwards in my way of thinking. I was straightened out when I tried to promote a soldier about a year too early! So here we go....
Down and dirty of promotions E-1 to E4.
TIG(time in Grade)= starts the day you sign your contract
TIS (time in service) = starts the day you ship for basic training
Automatic promotion requirements are as follows:
E1-E2- 6 Months TIS
E2-E3- Mos TIS & 4 mos TIG
E3-E4- 24 mos TIS & 6 MOS TIG
Promotions with waiver:
E1-E2- 4 MOS TIS
E2-E3 6MOS TIS & 2MOS TIG
E3-E4- 18MOS TIS and 3 mos TIG
This being said... RSP can advance from E1-E2 without regards to the TIS requirement. Anything above that though needs to follow the above guidelines.
So here is a general example of a PVT who is being promoted with waivers:
PVT Snuffy enlists on 20090101 and ships for basic 20090601. PVT Snuffy's RSP unit can promote him when he leaves for basic so he is not an E1.
PV2 Snuffy comes back to his unit on 20100101. PV2 Snuffy now has 6MOS TIS and 6MOS TIG. Which means he can be promoted to PFC w/a waiver. PFC Suffy will be eligible for his SPC w/a waiver on 20110101. He will at this point have 18MOS TIS and 12MOS TIG.
Now the same example except when PVT Snuffy returns from AIT he finds out his unit does not promote ANYONE with a waiver. He must wait out TIG and TIS requirements.
So he comes back as a PV2 on 20090601. He will be eligible for PFC on 20100601 because he will have 12 mos TIS and 12mos TIG. He will be eligible for SPC on 20110601 because he will have 24mos TIS and 12MOS TIG.
TIS is what holds most people up, especially those who sit in RSP for a year before shipping.
Make a little more sense now?