Reasons for Having Security Clearance Denied

by Diane Stevens ; Updated July 27, 2017

An adjudicative process is used, according to the U.S. Department of State website, that examines a sufficient time of a person’s life to make a determination as to whether that person is an acceptable security risk. Every person is looked at carefully, using adjudicative guidelines, to confirm that issuance of a security clearance is in the best of interest of national security. Failure to meet any of these guidelines could result in a security clearance being denied.

Inaccurate and/or Incomplete Information

Some of the more common reasons for being denied security clearance are the inaccurate and incomplete filing of the application. This can include an incomplete address, the applicant name not matching the name on the fingerprint card and the necessary releases not signed and dated properly.

Major Reasons

Four major reasons can cause denial without the process going any further. They are having been convicted of a crime with a sentence of more than a year, mental incapacity, military dishonorable discharge and alcohol abuse and/or the use of controlled substances.

Failure to Meet Other Guidelines

According to the U.S. Department of State website, failure to meet any of these other guidelines will also result in a denial: allegiance to the United States, consideration of foreign influence or preference, sexual behavior and personal conduct and misuse of information technology systems.

Other Reasons

Additional reasons for denial can include a lack of honesty and candor on the application. Denied clearance can also be related to citizenship, education, employment history and family.

About the Author

Diane Stevens' professional experience started in 1970 with a computer programming position. Beginning in 1985, running her own business gave her extensive experience in personal and business finance. Her writing appears on Orbitz's Travel Blog and other websites. Stevens holds a Bachelor of Science in physics from the State University of New York at Albany.