Recent Blog Posts
One of the major reasons individuals have difficulty obtaining or retaining a security clearance is what the Department of Defense (DOD) labels “financial considerations.” Typically, this involves situations where the applicant has a lot of outstanding debts. If you have trouble paying your bills on-time, the DOD sees that as a sign that you… Read More »
When it comes to everyday civilian employment, the country of your birth is largely irrelevant. Indeed, federal civil rights laws prohibit most employers from denying you a job on the basis of national origin. But for military and defense contractor positions that require a security clearance, that is not the case. One of the… Read More »
We have all heard horror stories about medical debt destroying a family’s finances. The U.S. spends more per person on healthcare than any developed nation on earth. And even with the passage of the Affordable Care Act, medical debt still forces thousands of Americans to seek bankruptcy protection every year. Medical debt can also… Read More »
Many low-level private sector jobs require security clearances, including airline baggage handlers. Such personnel require a security clearance to access restricted areas under the jurisdiction of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). And under CBP regulations, there are dozens of grounds for denying a clearance, mostly related to cases where the employee committed a… Read More »
Honesty is the best policy. That is more than common sense. When it comes to applying for a federal government security clearance, honesty is your only option. Any lie, error, or omission in your security clearance application (SCA) can–and will–be used as grounds to deny you a clearance. Even if you only lied by… Read More »
Can the Pentagon Discriminate Against Naturalized U.S. Citizens When It Comes to Reviewing Security Clearances?
As a general rule the federal courts do not intervene in security clearance decisions. The reason for this is fairly straightforward: Security clearances are a privilege, not a constitutional right, and the executive branch has wide discretion when it comes to deciding who should have access to sensitive information. That said, the government’s discretion… Read More »
Your sex life is not a purely private matter when it comes to obtaining a government security clearance. Under Guideline D of the National Security Adjudicative Guidelines used by all federal executive branch agencies, a person may be disqualified from receiving or retaining a security clearance due to their current or past “sexual behavior.”… Read More »
California recently made national headlines when it recently legalized the “recreational” use of marijuana for adults. But while California and several other states have taken a more welcoming approach to marijuana, the drug remains strictly forbidden under federal law. And any history of marijuana usages on your part, legal or illegal, may jeopardize your… Read More »
Many individuals are denied government security clearances for financial reasons. For example, U.S. Department of Defense regulations state that an individual “who is financially overextended” may be denied a clearance as he or she is “at risk of having to engage in illegal acts to generate funds.” Similarly, the DOD may assume that an… Read More »
Can I Challenge the Revocation of My Security Clearance Based on Racial or National Origin Discrimination?
It is extremely difficult to challenge the revocation of a government security clearance in court. The U.S. Supreme Court and lower federal courts have long held the judiciary has no inherent authority to “review security-clearance determinations,” which are ultimately a discretionary function exercised by the President of the United States and other executive branch… Read More »