Security Clearance

Security Clearance

Security Clearance

As noted by the U.S. Supreme Court in Department of Navy v. Egan, "no one has a ‘right’ to a security clearance." Department of the Navy v. Egan, 484 U.S. 518 (1988). Nevertheless, the Executive Branch of the Federal government must follow minimum due process requirements in determining whether or not it is clearly consistent with interests of national security to grant or deny a security clearance applicant access to classified information. In order to be found eligible for a Personnel Security Clearance (PCL), you must show that you are able and willing to safeguard national security information, based on your loyalty, character, trustworthiness and reliability.

Federal Employees

Executive Order (E.O.) 12968 lays out the minimum due process requirements for Federal employees. Specifically, E.O. 12968 provides applicants and employees whose security clearance is denied or revoked with: (1) a comprehensive and detailed written explanation of the basis for that conclusion; (2) any documents, records, and reports upon which a denial or revocation is based; (3) the right to be represented by counsel; (4) a reasonable opportunity to reply in writing to, and to request a review of, the determination; 
(5) written notice of and reasons for the results of the review; and (6) an opportunity to appear personally and to present relevant documents, materials, and information at some point in the process before an adjudicative or other authority, other than the investigating entity, as determined by the agency head.

Federal Contractors

Executive Order 10865 governs the adjudications, due process hearings, and appeals of security clearance cases for private sector employees, i.e., Federal contractors. Specifically, DoD Directive 5220.6 provides a federal contractor whose security clearance is proposed to be denied or revoked with: (1) notice of the specific reasons for the proposed action; (2) an opportunity to respond to the reasons; (3) the right to a hearing, including the opportunity to cross-examine persons providing adverse information; and (4) the right to be represented by counsel.

How we can help

  • Initial consultation and assistance in preparing an applicant’s Questionnaire for National Security Positions (Standard Form 86) and/or Electronic Questionnaires for Investigations Processing (e-QIP);
  • Consultation and assistance in responding to investigative interrogatories;
  • Advice and preparation for an applicant’s investigative interview(s);
  • Responses to Statement of Reasons (SOR)/Letter of Intent to Revoke or Deny a Security Clearance;
  • Representation of applicants at hearings before administrative judges of the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals (DOHA) or at personal appearances before other adjudicative officials; and
  • Appeals of adverse decisions.