Is waiting in adjudication for more than 3 years normal

I submitted SF86 in August, 2018 for TS. The polygrapher was able to “resolve” my poly back in September 2018. Got a re-interview with another BI, June 2021. Application current status is “awaiting adjudication”, it has been that way since around early 2019. Requests for status from my FSO result in the same response each time (awaiting adjudication). Is a 3 year wait normal/reasonable?

Unfortunately it seems like it’s more of the norm right now. A lot of people are in the same 3 year boat as you, especially for higher clearances in the IC. Just keep being patient and hopefully you’ll hear word soon.

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Thank you. I appreciate your response. Just confused, the world outside is moving forward while we’re waiting (although don’t want to lose the opportunity either, since already waited 3 years).


Wouldnt say it is “normal” but certainly not unheard of.

If there are red flags on the background investigation, is it possible for a case to even go to adjudication? I had read a few posts that talked about Naturalized citizenship, foreign ties (supporting family overseas) etc. that play a role during adjudication - how does the adjudication work in such a scenario? I work with a lot of colleagues that are foreign born and have quite a bit of family ties that got through the process with no problem.

The fieldwork portion does not stop because of issues. The case goes to adjudication unless there is a loss of jurisdiction.

Yes, it is frustrating to work a case where I believe that Subject should not have a clearance (or even be considered for one), but unless they present certain dangers, I have to proceed with the investigation regardless.


What is “normal” will depend on who is doing the adjudicating. This is not unusual in the IC.

Sorry, I am a bit confused. I am not aware of “loss of jurisdiction” and a quick search actually led me back to clearancejobs: The Obscure DoD Policy That Trumps a Dreaded “Loss of Jurisdiction” - ClearanceJobs
There is mention of JPAS (which apparently is replaced by DISS) etc.
I have yet to read through and look up all this.

You have to have some kind of “sponsor” in order to have an active clearance, which is almost always an employer of some kind. Someones when these cases take a long time and then linger in adjudication, the person may lose their job or decide to change jobs; sometimes it is not so easy for the new employer to pick them up.

I believe this is the “loss of jurisdiction” situation. It is also possible (I think) that a person may change positions with the same employer and no longer require a clearance, and end up in the same situation.

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Is it possible to find out the case number for a case in adjudication? Is this information available - via FSO or otherwise, to track the status (I read on another post that the agencies processing the application/adjudication don’t always have a system for tracking these, I’m thinking hopefully they still have an internal system to keep track of stuff)? Also, for contacting my congressman I’m wondering if you would need some kind of application/case number.

You don’t need a case number to contact your congressman.
They usually have a dedicated form for this type of inquiry (fill in your info, social, agency processing your clearance, your signature…).

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Re: contacting congressperson

How long should one wait in adjudication before considering this route (for a 3-letter)? It’s certainly not been 3 years but several months, and I don’t want to pull the trigger on this too early as it’s a last resort.

If I remember correctly, I think @Amberbunny2 recommended 24 months; but I am happy to be corrected. My experience of having a Senator’s office reach out did not achieve much, but YMMV

If it’s with NSA I wouldn’t wait longer than 6-8 months. GEN Nakasone wants to get it to 180 days, so keep him to his word.

It is nice to have dreams. Of course when you get to his level they call it “a vision.”

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That…is long and I’m thinking it fell off the desk so to speak. I tracked my submissions and as they hit 18 and 24 months we would inquire…after that I let my government security lead push. But if you are on the outside…nobody to help. After 36 months I would definitely request senator help. It was amazing how after denying they knew where a case file was…they suddenly found it and we had a decision.

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It has been a while since I had any dealings with contractor clearances for CIA but in the old days it was rare that they would “deny” anyone a clearance, they just never gave a firm answer. I kinda thought they hoped the applicant would just go away.

This was not for on-site jobs, but for contracts being worked at our facility, so it was not a question of employment being tied to the clearance.

I wish my results were so good.

The agency response was “there is a phone number The applicant can call any time to learn that the application is still actively processing” aka “pound sand”.

But I don’t want to discourage others - just set reasonable expectations

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Was that 18-24 months overall or 18-24 months in adjudication?

Long time since my last post but still the same boat. Yes, I contacted my congressman. You’re right, they had a standard form for release of information, department to contact etc. Turns out the department I requested information from on my status is not the correct one. I went back to my FSO requesting which department, but unfortunately that cannot be divulged.
So, back to waiting.
Oh, also Happy New Year to all!