Hoping I can get some feedback

Hello, I’ve been following this site for awhile, first post. I just had a few questions for some of the adjudicators… I’ve been in the process of a ts/sci since 1/18 submitted sf86. About a week ago, I received an email from adjudicator stating sead 4, stating that during processing, I was found to have delinquent accounts. One, a college bill from 2007, that was paid in full in 4/18 and state and fed tax returns from 2012- present . All have been filed on time except for 2016 state, which I filed in 12/17, was owed a refund and one from 2013 state, which was not filed. I found it on my own, reported it to the FSO and filed it the very next day and gave to FSO. (This occurred in May of 2019, also was owed a refund. The adjudicator asked for documentation on college bill and federal and state tax return transcripts as well as an explanation and proof of payment of bill and 2012- present fed and state tax return transcripts before a final sci decision could be made. I’m waiting on 2012 and 2013 fed returns but all others have been submitted and been found to be sufficient. Does this mean as long as I could provide this info, I should get my clearance? Is this common? Thank you!

I forgot to mention in my post that I now use a CPA for taxes, have for the last two years

Of course I am not an adjudicator and can’t claim to have any inside info, but here is one possible concern: you say you started processing on 1/18 and some of these debts were only paid off after that time. An adjudicator might take that to mean that you only started clearing up debts after you got into a position requiring SCI access.

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Just a question…what’s wrong with that? I know the importance of this clearance, any clearance really but especially this one. Before 1/18, I had no idea about any of the security clearance world. Everything that I’ve read and heard says that they just want to see that it’s taken care of or steps are being made to take care of it. Thanks for the reply!

The main reason I mention it is that financial concerns continue to be the #1 reason people are denied a security clearance. This suggests to me that they pay particular attention to this, and maybe if they thought the only reason you were clearing things up was the clearance it might raise some questions.

You could go to the DOHA website and see if anyone else had similar problems. I don’t know the URL offhand but I’m sure the Google could find it.

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Squirrel is right . . . Suddenly cleaning up your credit after applying for a clearance makes it look like that’s the only reason that you are paying attention to it. So, what does that do to indicate that you will continue to keep things clean after getting your clearance.

I have stated a number of times that I don’t believe that financial issues are any more important or looked at any harder than any of the other areas of the guidelines. The reason that financial issues are so common as reasons for denial is simply that so many more people have financial issues. The most common problem that people have is always going to be the most common reason for denials.


I agree with you Ed, any issue that shows up is a correlative effect to the population exposed to it. Its statistical and fact based. It takes the emotion out of it, call me a data scientist.

as a side note I find it funny that people emotionally react to data.

Responsibility goes a long way to showing character. Regardless of what it is. Everybody has troubles, but only addressing when FORCED to do so is a ding, and rightfully so.

Think about it, if your brother owed you money, he acknowledges he owes you, makes excuses or flat out refuses to pay you. Then you sued him and all of a sudden he can pay you? He could have always done it and it took another party to get involved.

The only thing I would kind of disagree with you on Ed is that the OP or any other person would stay on top of it knowing their clearance is on the line.


I didn’t say that most people wouldn’t stay on top of their finances knowing that their clearance is on the line, I said that it raises the question . . .

Concur as above. Your past indicates you really didn’t care much about finances. Even when owed money. As many have explained it isn’t a FICO score that is the determining factor it is the circumstances leading up to a FICO score…which is a good indication of payment history. Circular? Somewhat. We know FICO scores recover over time. This doesn’t mean you had a perfect payment history. They are more interested in your history. You have troubles staying on top of things going back a number of years. If you fixed everything and have a mitigation plan to stay on top (CPA is a good start) you may get cleared, you may get denied and get cleared on appeal.

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Thank you for the responses! I’m kinda confused, I keep reading things like get on a payment plan, to mitigate outstanding debt…I paid my completely off. That was my only financial issue, my overall credit history is very good, 15% credit to debt ratio, made something like 450 out of 454 payments on time. Isn’t it also a mitigating factor that it was a one time thing, likely to not happen again, as in a college tuition fee? I’m not saying it’s not my responsibility, it most definitely was but I also wasn’t hiding it and have held an interim clearance for over a year. I’ll let you all know what happens, submitting my last Fed returns so hopefully, as the name states, it’s almost done lol. Thanks again!

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Yes . . . all of those things are mitigating circumstances but particularly in many credit issues it’s uncertain if they are likely to happen again.

For example, let’s say that someone lost their job in 2010 and fell behind on payments. Now they are have cleaned up most of it and they are applying for a cleared position. What’s going to happen if they lose their job again? Are they doing a better job of living within their means? It’s difficult to tell from outside.


Vaguely similar issue if one of the experts here has any thoughts.

Out of compete oversight, I failed to include 2 previous accounts that went into collections in my SF86. Most recent was 3 years ago and combined less than $500. These were paid in full, no debating that. The BI raised these to my attention and agreed to let me research the details and send her an email with an explanation. I couldn’t recall the details with her at the time she surprised me with it.

Summary: Both were largely due to my living overseas at the time, my Mother moving a few times (my US mailing address) and mail not getting to me. I’ve corrected that part by not living overseas at the moment and attesting that I will never allow such confusion about my address to happen again. I also acknowledged that these were clearly noted on my credit report which (I was focused on detailing more serious mitigating data for other issues) I should have included.

Cause for concern or mitigated?

You should be ok. 1) you acknowledged and researched. 2) you gave a reason 3) it was three years ago 4) it’s paid off. Next time pull your free credit report and list