A National Security Clearance is a precious asset that can be threatened by criminal prosecutions or even accusations. Before you can be approved for security clearance, each aspect of your life is placed under a microscope – employment history, financial history, and housing history, to name a few. To become eligible for security clearance you are scrutinized on your stability, trustworthiness, reliability, discretion, character, honesty, judgment, and unfailing loyalty to the United States. These characteristics can be brought into question if you are charged with a crime, putting you at risk of losing that security clearance or holding you back from initial approval. When your job depends on that clearance, criminal court involvement can throw your career and your life completely off track.
According to the National Security Adjudicative Guidelines, criminal conduct “creates doubt about a person’s judgment, reliability, and trustworthiness. By its very nature, it calls into question a person’s ability or willingness to comply with laws, rules, and regulations.”And this is not referring to criminal convictions, or even just criminal charges. Doubt arises if there is merely evidence of criminal conduct, whether or not you are charged and prosecuted.
But allegations, charges, and even convictions do not automatically signal disqualification. You can fight back. Maybe the “criminal conduct” holding you back is from long ago before you turned your life around, or maybe nothing ever happened and the evidence presented against you is completely unreliable. Whatever the situation, if a security clearance is at risk, be sure to take the necessary steps to protect it and consult with a law firm that has the expertise to protect you and your livelihood.
Disclaimer: The information in this blog is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this blog should be construed as legal advice from The Eichner Law Firm or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this blog should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this blog without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country, or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.