Security clearance discontinued or denied?

Received my Secret clearance in Jan 2010 and my reinvestigation is due Jan 2020. Back in 2012/2013, I applied for a position that required a TS. I started the process to include SF86, poly (passed), and psych. However, and this is now 6+ years, I recall receiving a letter or e-mail about a month into the process stating that I did not get the job and that they were going to stop with my clearance process. I obviously wanted to know more so I requested applicable documents via FOIA.

Many months later I received the packet. First doc was a redacted email and the message/subject stated “The personnel security processing is being discontinued on [my name]…”

Question: Is a security clearance process being discontinued the same as being denied?

Question 2: If not, then on the updated SF86, for question Section 25 "Have you EVER had a security clearance eligibility/access authorization denied, suspended, or revoked?, would I check “NO”?

I still have the Secret clearance and never lost it after they “discontinued” my clearance processing for the TS.

About to fill out paperwork soon and would appreciate guidance, etc.!

Keep that paperwork, turn in a copy of it to the FSO/Security Manager if applying for future cleared work. There are a ton of variables impacting that question: was it the company who decided to not continue?Was it government? Was it a suitability review? Or did they have a higher qualified person who was already cleared? Did they possibly lose the cleared position? All of this can be a reason. It sounds more like a company decision. If you are positive your work ethic is high quality, no arrests, finances squared away, no recreational drug use while cleared…I think it is a non issue, but is worth you sharing with the FSO/BI/Security Manager.

To clarify, the position I held at the time was a government position. I had applied to another govt position (2012/13) that required the TS. Months after TS clearance process discontinued, I moved and obtained a position w a DoD contracting company and they picked up my Secret clearance that I had obtained in 2010. So still have the secret and it was never lost or taken from me after the TS process was being discontinued.

Note: I was disqualified for further/continued clearance screening due to medical disqual. But still kept my secret clearance and company picked it up when I left the govt months after the TS clearance process was discontinued.

Have read elsewhere that a “discontinued” is not a “denied”.

Discontinued is NOT the same as denied . . . But, I would take the documentation that you have with you to any meeting with a BI.


My position is that unless you get a letter officially informing you that you are being denied a security clearance, you have not been denied a security clearance.

Who knows, the customer/potential employer may have tried to submit you under a contract that ended or that they really did not have the right to submit new applicants. A customer that used to allow a company to submit dozens of people under a contract that might support five people, suddenly decides to crack down and reduces the number of people they will sponsor.

And yes, a good idea to hang on to that paperwork.

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Discontinued is not a denial. It simply means the Gov’t stopped the process. If you were denied, your secret clearance most likely would have been impacted.


And I would restate if it is explainable, it is understandable. Have no worries. But fully disclose and show your documentation.