State Department Secret Clearance

Hi everyone,

So my story is that my investigation for a secret clearance with the State Department started back in September of last year and I moved to adjudication at the beginning of December. However, since then my case hasn’t budged at all. I’ve been able to find a lot about DoD clearance times online but very little about DoS (since they handle their own). Does anyone have any insight on how long adjudications are taking for them right now? It seems ridiculous to have to wait over 4 whole months for adjudication.


Even if it is adjudicated, many DOS folks (at least in DC) are working from home, FSOT tests are canceled, OA/ BEX’s are canceled, A-100 classes are canceled, FLETC is closed, etc. Even the major intelligence agencies aren’t onboarding new people. And embassies all over the world are still trying to evacuate US citizens, which ties up an already overextended DSS.

So, any of those reasons could be a reason that you’re waiting.

I believe the next status update you’ll receive is “assigned to adjudicator.”

You’ve waited more than that at this point. What’s a little bit longer?

Also, “clearance times” don’t exist. Period. Every case is unique.


I am waiting on a TS from State. My SF86 was submitted mid-October 2019 and investigation was handed off for adjudication mid-late January. Still waiting. No doubt everything is being sucked into the COVID vortex.

Yeah, everyone I’ve been in touch with has said that the clearance process is still continuing even with COVID, but I don’t know what the damage to efficiency has been. I’d just at least like to have my clearance decided so that I can start as soon as things begin to clear up.

Nice to see a State Dept. conversation on here. You all are lucky that you’re at least in the adjudication phase though. I’ve been stuck in investigations since I submitted my SF86 in late September, myself and my contacts were all interviewed in January and February. I imagine it’s not budging for quite some time with the pandemic ongoing.

Are you in for a secret or top secret? Cause if it’s a top secret then your timeline seems pretty reasonable/everything I’ve read says it takes at least a year. I was kinda surprised by how fast Marine50s went through investigation, but judging by their user name they’ve been in the military, so that’s probably an advantage. Mine’s only a secret which is why I’m more concerned that it’s been going on for 8 months.

I’m in for a TS. It also surprised me how quickly Marine50’s investigation was completed but you’re likely right. I think everything is just in a holding pattern right now, extending an already lengthy process.

I think my background investigation was fairly straight forward. Nothing complicated in my background, no extensive foreign contacts, etc. However, case still in adjudication. I believe covid is having a big impact.