Mental health hold


I recently accepted a job that requires a clearance, although I’m unsure of the clearance level needed for this position. I’ve already submitted initial background check/finger prints and I’m waiting for that to come back to obtain access to e-qip. I’m nervous to fill out any clearance form because in Jan 2006 when I was in the military I believe my TS clearance may have been suspended due to a 3-day mental health hold. I currently see a therapist, am at no risk for many years and my therapist would sign off on my health. I’m curious as to how this may effect me getting a clearance?

A three day episode 14 years ago shouldn’t present a big problem. The problem that I see is that you don’t know what level of clearance you have applied for. It’s not like you have no experience, you previously held a TS so you know something about all of this.

What form did you fill out?


I have not filled out any clearance forms yet, other than the initial background investigation paperwork and fingerprints. Waiting for that to come back and then I was told that I’d have to do more paperwork on e-qip after that comes back. The job I applied for stated no security clearance required but my supervisor states I should be the same clearance as her, which is a Tier 3.

The paperwork is not new but I am just curious as to how, if anything, what happened 14 years ago will have an impact on the current clearance. I’m not even sure if it was suspended for the mental health hold either back in 2006. And there is also no doubt in my mind that my counselor would sign off on me, etc. What I went on mental hold for 14 years ago is not even an issue nor has been for a long time.

May have been?

I think the key point here is that you are doing fine, things are under control, and you are seeing a therapist. They’ll want you to sign a release form and the investigator may contact the therapist. But I don’t think this is an issue.

You will need to nail down that suspended clearance as that is something else you will need to disclose.

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Yes, May have been. I just remember it being talked about and at the same time I was ETSing and I recall that it may have not been an issue because i was getting out too.

Any idea how or where to begin to track that down?

Maybe a FOIA/privacy act inquiry, but that can take a long time. At the very least, provide details on the three-day hold thing.

I’ll leave it to the rest of the community to chime in on whether you should disclose that your clearance “may” have been suspended. Something may have happened but since you were on the way out, the paperwork may not have caught up with you.

It sounds like you just need a Secret clearance. Tier 3 investigations are for Secret, Tier 5’s are for TS.

I would definitely try to ascertain if your past clearance was affected at all because that is a question you will have to answer on your case papers. They will have you sign a special release in order to talk to your therapist. It shouldn’t be an issue overall if everything is well managed.

It will go one of two ways. Option one is that you don’t list it and it WAS suspended. In this case the investigator will find out and have to confront you on why you didn’t list it. You can then explain that you didn’t know if it was actually suspended or whatever the case may be.

Option two is that you do list it, and if it was actually suspended, the investigator will already know (and won’t have to document having to confront you about why it wasn’t listed…) and will ask a bunch of follow up questions. If it wasn’t suspended, they’ll just explain in their report that you listed it because you weren’t sure if it was suspended and you were trying to make sure to be forthcoming.

The common theme here is that the investigator will find out wether it was suspended or not either way. So you have to choose which route to go.

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