Denied Interim Question

My interim clearance was recently denied, and the agency decided to forgo the full TS/SCI investigation and rescind the TO. I have two questions:

  1. Is there any recourse or is this somewhat normal?
  2. For future applications, would this fall under the ‘have you ever been denied a security clearance’ question? I assume not, because a full investigation was not done.

I believe it was denied due to recency of drug use (8 months) but I did not want to lie. I plan to apply for similar jobs in the future and would not want to misstate the clearance denial question.

No . . . You were not denied and you have no line for appeal or recourse. A TS with drug use in the last year would be extremely unlikely. I’m surprised that they didn’t give you enough information during the interview process to know that you shouldn’t have continued.

Thanks for the reply. Up until I got the e-qip they told me (and the job posting said) it was secret, then mentioned it was interim secret but final TS. The interim also had a waiver request for mission critical positions. I had read secret with experimental drug use more than 6 months old could be okay based on mitigating factors. How long is usually normal abstinence (for young people) to obtain TS?


Minimum of 12 months for non legal drug use if it is experimentation, meaning a few here or there. If it was regular use…that is different. Also if you are older than 24 and old enough to know better I know my client wants 18 months to 2 years of non use, and if in your 30’s they may even want 3 years. Ed are you sure with a denial for an interim…it is non reportable? I err on side of caution and I would certainly bring up a denied interim to the BI person at a minimum.

There was no final decision and the applicant didn’t abandon the investigation in order to avoid a denial. The agency decided not to move forward. There is no way to punish the applicant since there is no reason to assume that they would have been denied in the end and there is no option for appeal. If you were made to report this as a “denial” you would have an excellent due process claim.

Also . . . Remember that those time frames that you are putting up can only be considered “guidelines” since there no hard and fast rules.

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Thanks again for the replies. Any sense of when it would be safe to apply again for a secret position? Would around 12 months since experimental use be likely good?

If you are mid 30’s I recommend waiting 18 months to 2 years, though 12 months is a normal guideline. I would still explain you were not given an interim but I understand what Ed is saying. An Interim is more a case of “we are comfortable exposing this person to classified without a full clearance,” so being denied an Interim…you were not denied a clearance, you were denied an Interim while they completed an Initial clearance. Two parallel and yet very different worlds.