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For individuals seeking a security clearance, there are resources available to help them with clearance issues they may be experiencing. When the government has denied a security clearance, it will provide a statement of reasons which will list specific concerns and provide the party seeking the security clearance the opportunity to respond in writing.

In some circumstances, the applicant for the security clearance may be able to respond in a way that is satisfactory to the government and addresses its concerns. If answering the government’s questions does not result in a security clearance being granted, the option to have a hearing before an administrative law judge is another possibility. The hearing is based on a review the applicant’s file and written responses submitted to the government and the applicant also has the opportunity to appear in person. It is important to be adequately prepared for the hearing.

The next step is the official appeal if the security clearance continues to be denied. The appeals board is only able to evaluate the administrative law judge’s review of the application for errors in procedure and to assess the decision based on technical grounds. It does not provide the opportunity to re-litigate the entire security clearance application and process which is important to keep in mind. Because this process can be complex, trained guidance throughout can be helpful.

Though there is a specific appeal option when a security clearance has been denied, it is also important to understand the full process of reviewing a security clearance denial and the various options available when the applicant is experiencing clearance issues. A security clearance can be important for a number of reasons, including the applicant’s livelihood, which is why it is helpful to understand the different options available when facing a denied security clearance application.