Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience.
I am a senior in college and I have lined up a job as a consultant for a firm working with government agencies. They want me to fill out a SF-86 for TS/SSBI. I have used marijuana a total of five times, the last time occurring two years ago. Two years ago, I also tried mushrooms once. Lastly, I have two underage drinking tickets from 2011. I haven’t used anything like that since the later part of 2011 as I decided that was not the lifestyle I wanted to live. I have also cut ties with everyone except in social situations.
I am excellent student and very active in the local community and on campus organizations.
Will I run into problems getting approved for my clearance? I will of course disclose all of this on my SF-86 and I have disclosed these incidents to my future employer.
Your past raises questions that will be examined. You say all the right things, but your last usage may be too recent. An adjudication will make the final decision and it could go either way.
Bill Bransford is managing partner of Shaw Bransford & Roth PC.
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By all means, this individual should include everything when filling out the SF-86. Omissions and being untruthful are real attention getters for investigators.
Being completely honest, even if it means listing incriminating information is the best thing to do.