Correspondence from an Adjudicator


After many delays, I was recently told that I am to expect correspondence from an adjudicator that I need to respond to before a final decision can be reached, does anyone have any insight as to what this could mean? Trying to get my ducks in a row in anticipation…is it standard for adjudicators to reach out for clarification/questions, or is this a bad sign? Any info appreciated.


I’m looking forward to hearing this answer myself.


Same here… waiting to hear this one.


Not exactly standard, as most people don’t experience this. But not necessarily a bad sign. If anything it is a good sign in that your case has made it to someone’s desk and isn’t lingering in a queue somewhere.

Hopefully you can provide whatever additional information is needed so the adjudicator can make a decision. Favorable, of course :slight_smile:


thanks! Just seems a little unusual to me. I don’t really know what information I’m expected to provide that would presumably have any weight in the adjudication decision. I find it even more peculiar that not of my references have been contacted, even though the actual investigation has been completed for months now. The whole process is very mysterious.


Who knows. Supposedly your file has been through several QC checks to get this far. Maybe the adjudicator would like just a little more info on something.


I hope so. Thanks again for the input.


We have no way to anticipate what questions or issues they need to address. You might be able to give us an idea since this is your application that is in question.

We can help you formulate a response once you get the question. If you want to share it.


Adverse information: marijuana use estimated to be 50 occasions over a two-year period between 5 and 7 years ago, and a one-time use over 3 years ago; two-time mushroom usage approximately 5 years ago; and an underage drinking citation nearly 7 years ago that was expunged (but that I listed anyway for transparency sake). This is for a Secret clearance application in a law enforcement position with a DOI agency. The drug use obviously isn’t a good look, and I fully expected to be asked about it. I am just curious in anticipation of hearing from an adjudicator what information I could possibly provide that may sway the final decision. Never got in trouble for it, never had a drug habit or problem (so no rehab or the like), it never affected my job performance or grades (made dean’s list every semester of college), etc. Any further advice would be most helpful, I’m still very much in the dark.


They are likely to ask about the circumstance which led to your use in the past and what you have done to eliminate a return. Look up the adjudicative guidelines and the mitigating factors for drug use.


I have–that’s what I’m unclear about. My abstinence well exceeds the threshold for mitigating factors, assuming they’re accurate and up to date. I can easily explain and demonstrate a stable lifestyle and work history since then, so hopefully this is the last hurdle for getting my clearance.


Actually I see these with a predictable level of frequency. Usually for credit or recreational use. At times it is just a conduct letter going to your file. They may ask for more clarity on who you used with, wanting to know if you still associate. I recommend not associating with the people you used with in the past, stay away from bars where this use was prevalent as well. I was contacted by my adjudicator regarding a security infraction they “just wanted to clear up,” and I repeated the truthful story. Again. For the 4th time. I have had adjudicators call and tell me the person is non responsive to the request for more information too. I reach out and ask if they want to get the clearance…they seem excited…I tell them respond…wash, rinse, repeat. After that I remove from processing.


that’s unfortunate if I end up getting a conduct letter put in my file since it was well before I was ever employed by this agency. I was granted an interim clearance last year to begin work, and obviously have comported myself with good conduct in between now and then. But, a waiver to begin work again prior to the completion of my full BI this past spring was denied, citing the drug use years ago. So I am still eagerly awaiting word from the adjudicator to see what actually happens. It seems rather unbelievable that I could be granted an interim clearance to begin work, work, do a good job, have even more time between my last drug usages, have nearly a year go by, and be denied a waiver to start work again prior to the full completion of my BI. The whole BI process is…interesting.


It happens. Someone said “whoa Nelly, we need weigh in on this.” But yes you did prove you are a good worker, keep doing so.


thanks for the replies! Maybe I’ll paraphrase what I receive from the adjudicator on here for any opinions on how to tackle it.


As long as it isn’t classified or revealing names. It should not be classified as you are waiting for the clearance, lol. Simply answer truthfully and in a positive manner. If you had a previous bad thing but long since moved on, tell them. That isn’t unusual. If we hang out with a crowd that often used drugs and we tried it a few times…it might be hard not slipping back into that behavior. But by getting new friends, new places…you manage to stay far enough away that you are no longer drawn to that. Getting married, having kids is also a mitigation for past “single” behavior. They are not looking for Angels. But they are looking for honesty. If you smoked MJ say so and dont’ quibble. They aren’t going to call the police.


I found out earlier today that the reason I haven’t received anything from an adjudicator is because the letter was sent to the wrong address (the one I was using during my training academy) almost a month ago. I replied and sent my current, home address, but should I request an extension in responding to the correspondence preemptively, without knowing its contents first?


@PPT How did you find out that they sent something to your old address?


When they resend the package, it should have a new date.


I get these letters with an artificial “return in 5 days” marking. Sometimes I am getting them 30 days after they claim they were sent. We reach out to the prospective hire and try to get them the envelope. In every case they granted the extension. Now, getting some folks to provide the requested info…can be tough. Respond, hopefully with positive developments.