TS/SCI prediciment

So I was hired by a company for a position that required a TS/SCI clearance w/o a poly. During the hiring process I had to fill out a security questionaire and one of the questions asked if I had used any illegal drugs in the past seven years, to which I said not even though I did smoke weed in college and tried LSD twice and mushrooms once. The last occurence of any use was over 1.5 years ago. I have been working the job I was hired for over a year now, but never ended up being put in for a clearance and have been doing unclassified work. Now they want me to transfer to a job which said that I would need a TS/SCI w/o poly (like before). I was given the same company security form with the same questions and gave the same answers as before. I was recently told that I should expect the SF-86 paperwork in a few weeks, but am now being told that I actually need to take a poly. So I want to know since I didn’t disclose past recreational drug use on the company form, should I be honest on all of the SF-86/poly questions? Also about how long after submitting an SF-86 should I expect to be asked to take a poly?

Be honest all the time. Don’t lie. I doubt anyone can answer questions about the time of a poly.

If I am honest when it comes to the SF-86 and the poly, will it be grounds for immediate disqualification if I change my answers from what I said on my company’s security questionaire?

The polygrapher will not know anything about your company’s application forms and neither will the investigator or adjudicator working your case. The drug use will be looked at and could prevent you from being approved.

The other risk is that your company will see your SF-86 and MAY notice that the drug use doesn’t match up to what you put on your application. (“Wow! We took him on with recent drug use? No . . . Look at his application. It doesn’t say anything about it.”) This could cause you to lose your job for lying on your application.

You are pretty much between a rock and hard place. Your best bet is to start telling the truth and stick to it.


Ed nailed it. Be honest on the poly. You have no need to bring up what you told your company;however, that guilt, may skew poly results. If that happens, you need explain to Polygrapher why your reading is wonky. That makes sense…it is explainable…and therefor understandable. Don’t expect a fun experience in Poly. Expect 4 plus hours. Expect a second poly and follow up interview as well. But as Ed said, start telling the truth now and stick to it. Most of the 400 plus on my current contract get the first poly about 12 months in to the investigation process. A follow up comes fast or it can wait 3 to 5 months (one long time poster was pulled back in 3 years later!) 18 months to 24 months is the norm for a person to complete the process from no clearance to TS SCI Full Scope Poly. I have gone back and compared my screening form with an SF86 when turned in. But I also understand at each screening level, if folks are honest, they begin to be more forthcoming. Pressure builds, and they realize what is on the line, and they act accordingly. Your HR paperwork and your Security Paperwork, if done correctly should not involve HR input. Working correctly, HR tells Security when a person is disqualified for interview reasons (no experience etc), and Security can inform HR there is a disqualifying reason (adjudicative guidelines). Poly never reveals to our company security or HR office the reason a person did not successfully complete the poly. Neither will the adjudicator or investigator. We get a simple form letter if they are denied an upgrade or it is a revocation. So feel a degree of confidence interacting with the Polygrapher. I can tell you from past experience there were plenty folks at my site not wanting to put info down that HR could see and take action (wrongly) on. They were much more comfortable talking to me and being honest. Eventually I was able to get HR out of the process here entirely.

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Company questionnaire has nothing to do with the government form.

Wonder how this one worked out.

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