Security Clearance Loss of Jurisdiction

Posted by William Henderson

Few things cause more frustration than being rejected by a prospective employer because of a “Loss of Jurisdiction” and an “Incident Report.”

When you’re terminated from a job where you held a Department of Defense (DoD) security clearance, your former employer “separates” you in the Joint Personnel Adjudication System (JPAS—the DoD security clearance database). If you were terminated from your job for cause, the employer often concurrently submits an Incident Report via JPAS describing the reason for termination. This occurs when the termination is related to one of the thirteen Adjudicative Guidelines for Determining Eligibility for Access to Classified Information.

Normally when an employer submits an Incident Report to the DoD Central Adjudication Facility (CAF) responsible for your clearance, the CAF reviews the report to decide what action is necessary. If the report doesn’t contain any disqualifying information, the CAF closes the Incident Report simply by updating the JPAS record. Alternatively the CAF can request additional information, including a new Questionnaire for National Security Positions (Standard Form 86—SF86), and/or a limited investigation. Once sufficient information is received, the CAF can decide whether to favorably adjudicate the Incident Report and “continue” your clearance or begin the process of clearance revocation.

When the Incident Report occurs at the same time you’re “separated” in JPAS, the CAF cannot review the Incident Report or take any other action, and a Loss of Jurisdiction is entered into your JPAS record. The Loss of Jurisdiction and the unresolved Incident Report remain in your JPAS record, and your name is flagged in red letters. Getting the red out can be a problem.

The problem arises when you apply for a job at another place of employment and your clearance cannot be quickly reinstated. The new employer can take “ownership” of your JPAS record, but the request for Research/Recertify/Upgrade (RRU) submitted via JPAS for reinstatement will require the CAF to favorably adjudicate the Incident Report before your clearance can be reinstated. If the RRU is submitted to the same CAF that originally received the Incident Report and the report contains only minor unfavorable information, the CAF can easily and quickly resolve the matter and reinstate your clearance. If the RRU is submitted to a different CAF, that CAF will only see that an unresolved Incident Report exists; they won’t be able to see what was said in the report. The CAF will have to obtain a copy of the report before they can review it and determine what action should be taken. This usually means initiating a limited investigation, which could take months to complete, and might or might not result in clearance reinstatement.

For this reason many prospective employers may be reluctant to extend a job offer for a cleared position when a pending Incident Report and Loss of Jurisdiction are in your JPAS record. It’s usually faster for them to obtain a Secret clearance or an interim Top Secret clearance for an applicant who didn’t previously have a clearance.

A person’s eligibility for access to classified information in JPAS can be change to “Loss of Jurisdiction” for other reasons, such as:

  • * Sponsorship of a clearance is withdrawn while any other adjudicative action is pending.
  • * Withdrawal of an interim security clearance by the Defense Industrial Security Clearance Office (DISCO).
  • * Failure to submit an SF86, when requested by a CAF.
  • * Access eligibility to Sensitive Compartmented Information for a DoD contractor is denied, revoked, or terminated, and DISCO has security cognizance for the collateral clearance.

Although Loss of Jurisdiction is never desirable; when it occurs to a person who is still employed in a position that requires a clearance, they are notified of the problem and may be in a situation where they can exert some influence over the ultimate outcome. When Loss of Jurisdiction occurs in conjunction with an Incident Report, the person usually doesn’t become aware of the problem until they apply for another job that requires a clearance. Unfortunately the only way to resolve the problem is to find a prospective employer who is willing to sponsor the clearance and wait until the Incident Report is

William Henderson is a retired federal clearance investigator, President of Federal Clearance Assistance Service (FEDCAS), and author of Security Clearance Manual and Issue Mitigation Handbook. FEDCAS offers services to both security cleared individuals and applicants who need expert guidance on questions related to their security clearance. 

Copyright © 2012 Last Post Publishing. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission.


This entry was posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 7:15 am

18 thoughts on “Security Clearance Loss of Jurisdiction”

  1. Great posted.. How can you be reached because I am experiencing this exact issue loss of jurisdiction, and I am in need of some direction and I am also willing to pay for your service.


  2. I am there. My SCI was not adjudicated before I was laid-off from my last position. In talking with DOHA, I learned that once a new employer sponsors my clearance, it will be resumed. In addition, the company was under investigation. The owner (fully cleared) married a foreign national, and is sponsoring citizenship for his new wife’s relatives. Oops!

    1. I know you posted this comment a long time ago, but I was wondering, did you find someone to pick up your investigation? What were the results? I am going through a similar thing, except I have a Secret and was going through a TS investigation when I was laid off.

      1. Yes, I was picked-up by a contractor in June of 2013, submitted another SF-86 via the SFO, and was granted my clearance in August of 2013. I’m hoping the same happens for you sooner rather than later.

        1. Did your new company require you to have an SCI? Where I was picked up recently only requires a Secret, which I have, but I was laid off duringa TS investigation. Would I still need to fill out an SF-86 again for only my Secret?

  3. I got the “loss of jurisdiction” upon separating honorably. It cost me a contracting job because JPAS was their means of verification. However, a week later, I accepted a Federal job because my clearance still showed in Scattered Castles, which is the government-wide, Intel Community clearance database. New SSO explained that sometimes contractor SSOs only use JPAS because they only deal with DoD clients. He said all it usually takes is a prompt by you to tell them to check Scattered Castles. Knowledge is power!

  4. Mr. Henderson, thank you for the info concerning Loss of Adjudication. There are many factors involved. I had resigned from my previous job, with Raytheon in May 2012, In CA. to return to Northern, VA. to be near my mom, in PA. Health problems. At that time, I was under going a Investigation for a update/security incident. Girlfriend, Philippian. Gee what a surprise. When I resigned, it before adjudication. Security Manager pulled me from system.
    I went through the same crap in 2008, when Raytheon laid me off. I in middle of update. The Manager, a retired Navy Officer, PM told my Security Officer, to pull me from the system. My Security Officer, a Retired Army NCO, told the PM, NO!. So everything OK. My Security Officer, had the balls to say no. He a great NCO. I am a former NCO, Retired Officer from USAR. Basically, Government Contracting Sucks. What more can I say?

  5. I am a Marine Corps Veteran who has held a TS/SCI clearance since 2005. I separated (honorably) from service in November of 2013. Prior to separating, I made it very clear to the SSO and my command that I intended to join the reserves with the same MOS I held on active duty and would therefore need to retain my clearance.

    I found out on December 20, 2013 that my clearance was placed in a loss of jurisdiction status. I am now unable to join the reserves with the same MOS I have enjoyed during active service.

    This has made job hunting very difficult.

  6. I had the same thing happen when I separated. Loss of jurisdiction doesn’t mean you’ve lost your clearance or SCI eligibility. It just means, basically, that you were released from the military and did not have a follow on request (immediately) for the clearance in JPAS. Your clearance will likely still show in scattered castles which is the IC database of clearances to be used for verifications (by ODNI directive). You will likely have problems being verified by contractors, who only seem to have JPAS access, but for all Fed jobs, you should be good to go if you nudge them to check scattered castles. Hope this helps!

    1. Have LOJ in JPAS name not in red not connected to any contracting company, but have an offer what do i tell the company please advise

  7. 16 months since I left Harris Corp. and previously with Kwajalein Range where I was ok’d for T.S. but investigation not completed. One would’ve thought I’d simply be reverted back to Secret but NO, Loss of juristiction now in JPAS and I’m screwed. I’ve had a clearance since Desert Storm and now thinking of becoming a truck driver!!

  8. I’m a recently retired Army veteran who’s learned of his clearance being revoked back in 2011. Upon learning this I have taken action but have been unsympatheticlly told that there’s nothing that can be done. I refuse to believe that. Recently I was contacted by AECOM for a job overseas but could not take it because of the revocation. Now while I was still in boots my S2 shop fed me a line of bullshit about having 1 year retainability everywhere I asked questions to get the proper guidance on how to proceed was met with either a lack of knowledge or lack of sympathy.

    So I ask…..How do I fix this (There’s Always a way! )

  9. My clearance went LOJ while I was between jobs, luckily I was already in talks with a company who was willing to pick up the clearance by submitting an RRU. The RRU was approved in less than 2 weeks and I’m good now. LOJ with no incident report is not too bad at all it’s just slows things down.

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