Concerns about ex spouse

Thank you all in advance for any help.

I have recently accepted a tentative offer for a position that will eventually require a Top Secret Clearance. I have been told that they will put me in for an interim secret initially so I can begin work.

I have reviewed the SF-86. I have not done any illegal or illicit drugs, never been arrested, no issues on my credit report, no questionable foreign contacts (one friend is here on a fiance visa and a foreign cousin in law), etc. Based on my “clean” record, I think I stand a good chance of getting interim secret and eventually top secret.

My concern is my ex husband. We divorced two years ago, and he is very vindictive. I was saddened to discover I had to provide his information on the form, though I understand why. I have two questions:

  1. How much weight do adjudicators place on the words of an ex spouse? I would not put it past him to say something calculated to hurt my chances. He’s pretty intelligent, so he would stick with something plausible (i.e., he wouldn’t say I’m a spy for Iran, but he might imply I do drugs or abuse alcohol). My references would not support any of these statements (post-college me is pretty boring).

  2. Will the person who contacts him let him know the details of the position? The position is such that he would be able to figure out where I am relocating. I do not want him to know that information–is there somewhere in the extra information sections where I can ask them not to disclose this information?

Thank you.

  1. I’m not an adjudicator so I can’t comment on this, but I doubt an adjudicator would make a decision on what just one person says, especially an ex spouse, if there is no other evidence or testimony from others to back it up.

  2. Investigators are not allowed to divulge any information about your case/position other than a blanket statement somewhere along the lines of “you are currently being considered for a position involving national security, public trust, or in a sensitive capacity”

I would definitely put any details/requests you can in the optional section of the equip regarding your ex spouse and the relationship. Investigators are not “allowed” to do a lot of things that are done quite frequently. The training/competency level varies greatly. Any details you put in your equip will perhaps be read and add a bit of extra professionalism to your case. Good luck.

You’ll be adjudicated under the whole person concept like anyone else. Sour grapes from ex spouses don’t carry much weight except in extreme circumstances.

Hopefully your investigator is professional and keeps things “need to know.“ Your ex spouse needs to know very little at this point.

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We fully expect ex spouses to sometimes be nasty and if they did say something, it would have to be collaborated through interviews with other people. For instance, if he was to say you used drugs, we would ask him if anyone else that may know this and then interview them as well to see if they disclosed anything and the same story if they did mention it. You can also comment on your 86 in that section that you do not have a good relationship with your ex and why. Whole person is used, in other words we didn’t focus on one issue but the whole picture. I wouldn’t worry at all…

Also, the Investigator WILL NOT disclose anything about you or why you need a clearance.

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You are neither the first nor the last employee seeking a TS-SCI clearance with A lying vengeful spouse. I would not worry about it. Whatever your spouse says he has to provide evidence. Also he could get in trouble for lying to a federal investigator on record. Background Investigators (BI) will gather the information your spouse provides but will ask for evidence. He will also interview other references and will corroborate what your ex-spouse said. Don’t put any warning on your SF-86 about your spouse. Then BI may think you are hiding something. They are smart people they can discern who has been a vindicted person vs a neutral objective individual.

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Thank you, I will definitely add my concerns and a description of our relationship (or lack thereof) in the notes. It will also explain why my contact information for him is likely not current, though I think I have his phone number at least.

Great, that’s what I was hoping. I’m a little anxious that he might get one former mutual friend to lie on his behalf, but I have other mutual friends who I could provide who could address that person and their relationship with my ex, so think I’m okay.

Thank you. I won’t put any warnings about his vindictiveness, but would it raise a red flag to ask them to be careful not to disclose anything about the position/my whereabouts to him?

Ex spouses are great to interview when they’re receiving monthly child or spousal support from the subject. All roses and white fluffy clouds.

During the interview you can mention that. But don’t write anything on your SF-86 too many people will read it and dont have a clue of your detailed issues with your Ex- spouse.

OTOH The more you tell him/her the more suspicious they get. It’s their job to gather information. The adjudicator at the Central Adjudication facility has everything in front of him/ her to make a decision, the BI report, your credit card report, poly if required other interviews. if something Needs clarification they’ll contact you.

Issues with ex- Spouses that require additional information are domestics violence, restriction orders, joint debt, and child custody fights. Last year during my TS/SCI BI asked about my ex spouse who I divorced in 2002. Last time I contacted him was in 2012 because I needed his contact info for the BI interview. BI could not reach him with the information I provided of SF 86. I told BI have not heard from ex spouse since 2012, I don’t know his current info, This was my not my first TS/SCI reinvestigation. the BI spent 10 months digging into my past. He also Interviewed people that worked with me overseas and now livein the States. After 10 months The Central Adjudication Facility (CAF) received BI report and in 30 days I was adjudicated my TS/SCI. I think after that kid Snowden betrayed the US and released major TS secrets all of us are looked as potential liabilities. Having a clearance is a privilege not a right.