Just out of curiosity, has anybody hired a clearance lawyer to help with a response to an SOR or represent you at a hearing? If so, was your clearance granted with their assistance?
You’re better off with an attorney as opposed to going at it pro se.
There are stats around here somewhere showing that you have a better chance of getting/retaining your clearance if you are represented.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t do it yourself. Representing yourself in an in-person hearing seems more risky. You will be sitting in front of a judge and opposed by a lawyer. In a hearing “on the written record” I think that the opportunity to research and fine tune your defense allow for a better chance.
I also depends on what the government reports in your SOR. These less legal the problems are, the better shot you have.
I did. The case I had (a polygrapher demanding I admit to countermeasures) was a fairly lost cause because security types are more interested in justifying polygraphs than actually determining if one is a legitimate concern. However, I had the lawyer during the in-person hearing and the DOHA judge recommended that my clearance be restored. Unfortunately, a DoD security board still got the final say and revoked my clearance, and lied on the letter that revoked it. However, with a favorable recommendation from the judge and the fact that the board lied on the revocation letter, ultimately using the BS excuse that they made a typographical error, will probably work in my favor when I request reconsideration in the fall.
That said, it probably would not have gone as well as it did had I not used a lawyer.