A security clearance is vital for many positions within the federal government. Security clearances grant access to classified information, so the government must ensure that only trustworthy individuals are granted one. However, sometimes individuals with a security clearance can face suspension, revocation, or denial of their security clearance. In such cases, knowing how to challenge the notice and appeal the decision is crucial.
If you have received a notice of intent to suspend, deny, or revoke your security clearance, act now — call The Law Firm of John P. Mahoney, Esq., Attorneys at Law, PLLC at (202) 350-3881 to schedule a phone consultation with one of our award-winning, top-rated, million dollar advocate federal employment attorneys.
Why Would My Security Clearance Be Suspended, Denied, or Revoked?
There are several reasons why your security clearance may be suspended, denied, or revoked. These include failing to meet the standards of personal conduct, financial irresponsibility, or having a criminal record. Once you receive a notice of intent to suspend, deny, or revoke your security clearance, acting quickly is essential.
What Should I Do After Receiving This Notice?
The first step is to request the agency's evidence file, request a hearing or personal appearance before the federal administrative agency appeals panel that conducts security clearance appeals hearings, and request an extension of time to respond to the agency's statement of reasons for a reasonable time after receiving the evidence file. The written response to the agency's Statement of Reasons (SOR) should be made with the assistance of an experienced federal employment attorney for best effect, as a strong written response can best support your claims and prepare your case for the hearing process ahead, and the circumstances mitigating any alleged security concerns should be properly argued.
If you voluntarily reported the conduct and were truthful in responding to the agency, have demonstrated positive changes or remediation, or, if applicable, sought assistance from your agency, your attorney might suggest including these details in your written response.
Requesting A Hearing or Personal Appearance
As part of initially responding to the SOR, you should always request a hearing or personal appearance. This request must be in writing, clearly and concisely explaining why you are challenging the notice. You must also provide any evidence supporting your case. An experienced federal employment attorney can help you prepare your response for the hearing, gather evidence, and present your case effectively.
During the hearing or personal appearance, you will have the opportunity to present your case to the administrative judge. The judge will also consider any evidence from the government agency issuing the notice. You will be asked questions regarding your responses, and the judge will evaluate your credibility and you as a "whole person" to determine whether it is clearly consistent with national security to grant or revoke your security clearance.
What If The Hearing Does Not Rule In My Favor?
If you disagree with the administrative judge's decision, you may be able to appeal to the applicable appeal board. The appeal board will review your case and make an independent decision, which is final and binding.
If you reach this stage when fighting for your security clearance, it is vital that you retain a skilled and experienced federal employment attorney to fight on your behalf. With the high stakes of reaching the appeals process, it becomes essential that the board rules in your favor to preserve your federal employment and security clearance.
Why Should I Retain An Experienced Federal Employment Attorney?
However, it's essential to understand that the appeals process can be lengthy and complicated. That's why having an experienced federal employment attorney who can guide you through the entire process is crucial. At The Law Firm of John P. Mahoney, Esq., Attorneys at Law, PLLC, our Top-Rated, Award-Winning federal employment attorneys understand how vital retaining or obtaining a security clearance is to protecting your federal career, and we will fight on your behalf.
With over 30 years of experience fighting for the rights and careers of federal employees across the country, we have a track record of success in obtaining positive outcomes for our clients in a timely manner. Call us today at (202) 350-3881 to schedule a phone consultation with one of our attorneys.