Letter from hiring agency

I got a letter from my hiring agency asking me to explain 2 potentially negative accounts on my credit report. Is this normal? Isn’t this normally done during the interview? Just curious as to why the would send a letter.

Also this was from the suitability department, does this mean that my investigation hasn’t even begun yet?

Financial accountability is one of the leading 4 criteria for clearance denial, I actually think it’s number 1… sounds like they are trying to head off any potential issues before starting the process i.e. make sure you are suitable.

Did you submit a SF-86 (E-QIP)?

Yes in May of this year

Ok then I would think your investigation has started. It is weird that questions are coming from the hiring agency and not an investigator with the branch of government you are applying for.

Its completely possible that his SF86 has not been released and the hiring agency is doing their own background work prior to submitting it.


Agreed, I went back and forth with the company I was being hired with. E-qip corrections and paperwork on certain things, then I was told when my packet (SF86) was being submitted. The company could have been reviewing all this time before they submitted as you stated. Which would be unfortunate because of the additional wait time.

Well yea that sucks, at the end of the letter it said upon review of my response they will make a “final decision on my qualification for employment”

It isn’t a good situation to be in for you, sorry to hear that. I can understand that the company would do some “vetting” before passing a case on for a clearance. The companies I have worked with encourage giving the clearance process a chance unless you have some glaring disqualifying dings on your record.

You guys are aware that the companies PAY for these investigations right? That is why they will vet as much as is possible so as not to incur a cost to the company. This is just plain good business sense. They are in the business to make money.

Well this is a federal agency, which is funded by the government. But yea I get your point

Yes obviously we are aware that businesses try to make money, and clearances are sponsored. The point i’m making is in private contracting scenarios, where the company is merely a recruiter/liaison for a government agency. It is ultimately up to the government agency who is a security risk or not. A company can and should vent potentially disqualifying information, but to start gauging items that could be cleared I think is unfair. Not processing someone because of 10k of debt compared to 2k of debt? Not processing someone because they had 3 misdemeanors instead of 1 misdemeanor? The guy above mentioned his company has delayed him because of 2 negative accounts. Well I had much more than 2 and got cleared. So like I originally stated, unless he has glaring disqualifying information, they should allow the clearance process to run its course.That’s just my opinion on the matter.

you correct Mike, taken into consideration is the whole person concept, I used to worry a lot about what about this and that, what I am starting to realize is that unless your trying to get a TS, most of the time, not all the time ,as long as your not ignoring your issues, you will be just fine.

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Well this is for a TS. So probably why they are sending me the letter

Now that I think about it, I remember one company asking me to write an explanation for something derogatory on my record. They can attach supporting documents and statements to your packet, and it can help the investigative process. I wouldn’t get discouraged quite yet. I would say it’s perfectly normal to ask for a written explanation. Also, I’ve personally known more than one person with debt/bankruptcy who still received a TS clearance. It is unfortunate the delays you are seeing but I would say you still have a good chance of getting cleared as long as you don’t have much more negative information on your record.

I’m not really discouraged. It’s only one account that I’m worried about and it’s already been paid off. The other account they listed was inaccurate information which I have already disputed with the credit bureaus and they have deleted it off my credit report. Other than this and one misdemeanor charge what was dismissed, I don’t have anything else on my record.

Mike you say that you had much more than 2 negatives and got cleared. was this for a federal job and how did you mitigate the negatives please? When did you get your clearance and at what lvl? I understand if you do not want to reply, can you PM me please?

I don’t think this site has a PM function does it? It would be helpful in certain situations. I am currently waiting for another clearance on a new position, but I was cleared for a DOD secret within the past year. It was my second time holding a DOD secret. I had a few financial concerns. Got in trouble once in the Military. Had a run-in with police a few years back. I just did my best to explain why the events occurred, what I did to fix it, and what I have done to stay on the straight and narrow path since those events. I have a close friend who has held a TS for many years with bankruptcy, an arrest and admitted alcoholism in recent years. If your honest and upfront about all this, and have taken steps to make sure the same mistake doesn’t happen again, there is a chance.

  • I looked at a previous post you made about debt, mine was higher and credit score pretty low. If you can explain what caused you to accrue the debt, and that ALL of it is being addressed, you should be fine. They want to see you are working on correcting it, even if it is minimal payments.

I agreed with @lmikelowrey post. I received a favorable adjudication for one of those IC agencies (fed position). I had an arrest and misdemeanor charge (public intoxication, which was eventually dismissed), two terminations (one as result of the arrest and the other was for making a genuine mistake on OF-306 form) and a traffic violation (reckless driving, which was reduced to speeding), was found unsuitable for a public trust position with non-IC agency… all of those happened within past 2 years. They all occurred after I received a favorable adjudication with another IC agency in 2016 (fed position).

Also, my finance wasn’t stellar by any meaning and I had debts due to the terminations, but I was not asked about my finance although I volunteered the disclosure and made every effort to pay my debts (I was even a Uber/Lyft driver to pay my bills). Anyway, I was told that it will be a red flag if you have any accumulated/total delinquent debt of over $2,000.

You will stand a better chance if get help and get take care of the issues. More importantly, be thoroughly honest and straightforward with documentations that back you up.

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AWoodhull- Thank you for sharing your story. I was a little hesitant to post details about my past but I think it may help some applicants who are waiting on a clearance. It helps to know that others have made mistakes and still got cleared. I think the moral of the story is, it’s not necessarily the mistakes you make but the person you become from those mistakes. Everyone is human, but we have to take measures to improve our faults and not continue to make the same mistakes.

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