Clearance "falling out of scope" and delays due to OPM?

I have a couple of questions that I have been trying to research myself but I haven’t been able to find the answer.

I applied for a job overseas as a contractor and the company contacted me back a few days later, it’s been a little bit of a long process and things have been pushed back many times. My first question is about my clearance falling out of scope. My 24 months would have been last month, but I was told by this company that they “caged” my clearance before my actual 24 months hit. They explained “caging” meant that they basically put a hold on my clearance and that they tell OPM to not do anything with my clearance because I will be getting hired. My question is how does a company “cage” or take ownership of your clearance? I just sent them all of my hire paperwork last week, because they took awhile to actually get it all to me. So I was wondering if they able to “cage” without all of my paperwork (which included a SF-312).

My second question is about delays for me actually deploying because of OPM and issues with E-QIP. I was originally supposed to go to CRC on the 17th of this month and it has been push back a few different and I was told this is due to set backs with OPM and a shut down of E-QIP. Has anyone else had this problem or have any knowledge about this?

I can add some info, not sure if it completely answers the question.

Every contractor has a CAGE code which uniquely identifies them. In some cases, they may have more than one. I know this only because one of the companies I worked for did have two cage codes and it kinda messed things up if people got into the wrong code.

So I guess they were able to take “ownership” of your record in JPAS. I think when you go past 24 months you go into “loss of jurisdiction” which is where the problem comes up. So they have established “jurisdiction” over your record. I think once you accept an offer of employment they can start doing this sort of thing.

As far as shutting down eQIP they did shut it down last year for a couple months but have not heard anything lately. There are a couple of security manager types who do check in here so hopefully they will have more info and be able to correct any mistakes I’ve made.

Anyway, you want to make sure everything is straight before you go to CRC because there is some kind of inane rule about having to complete CRC within 30 days of arriving in-country, so even if you did go but could not deploy right away, they might make you do it again.

Do you know if the SF312 has anything to do with them being able to CAGE my clearance? Before my 24 months has hit I accepted the job offer, however none of my paperwork was went to me until the 10th of this month which was after my 24 months. In that paperwork was the SF 312, I wasn’t sure if that was part of it.

Do you mean the OF-312? That is the “Application for Federal Employment” but I have heard of it being used for contractors. I don’t think that is necessary, we recently hired someone and were able to pick up their JPAS and I don’t think we use the OF-312.

Hang in there, sounds like the security folks know a thing or two.

They took ownership of sponsoring you for a clearance before you had a 24 month break so that a new investigation would not be required if/when you get on boarded. The nondisclosure agreement (SF-312) date does not matter. They may have you fill out a new SF-86 in e-QIP just to make sure no flags are present since you were last in a cleared status.

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Thank you both for the response. That clears up a lot for me. However I’m still wondering if there was an issue with OPM within the last few weeks. I was told that on March 9th my date for CRC kept getting pushed because the entire OPM server was down and that there were problems with EQIP, so they weren’t able to process anything for CRC. Just wondering how true that is.

There was a glitch with the database where security personnel, (e-QIP initiators and reviewers) didn’t have access, it lasted for about three days.

Concur with Marko and Squirrel. I see it as a positive they sponsored you. Good luck with the position. I hope it is fruitful for you.