You recalled your previous seven addresses, your cousin’s wife’s phone number, and that one time you were arrested in college. The days of paperwork and SF-86s are behind you. Or are they? Nope! Enter periodic reinvestigations. But beware, these are not always a given.
I have an acquaintance who is still on active duty with the U.S. Army and reached out for some advice from ClearanceJobs. His clearance investigation expires next month, and he received an email stating that it will not get renewed due to the fact that he’s retiring this year and has less than 12 months remaining before his ETS (“expiration – term of service”) date this November. His clearance investigation expires next month, and he was interested to know if there was a grace period.
He has been networking, connecting with recruiters on ClearanceJobs, and getting to know his potential employers in the civilian world. This news is shattering, because all the networking with recruiters was based on TS/SCI requirements!
Do You Need a PR – Or Not?
Periodic reinvestigations (PR) may not be submitted if an individual is within 12 months of retirement or separation. Individuals in Special Access Programs (SAPs) should always consult with their SSO for additional information.
His unit asked him to stay in for another year, which would be grounds to initiate a PR, but he wanted to stick with his retirement date due to personal circumstances. With his investigation set to expire before he leaves service, his clearance will not be current, and a contractor will need to initiate a new security clearance investigation.
My advice is to keep up with networking, speaking with recruiters and their Facility Security Officers verifying his on the industry side to see their thoughts on his personnel file. With tight timing, it may be possible to initiate a PR while on terminal leave and before the investigation has expired. Be honest about your timeline.
While you are on active duty, you must absolutely have an open dialogue with your security officer. Know your dates and know your options.
But What About Continuous Evaluation?
Of course, continuous evaluation is being rolled out to an increasing number of security-cleared professionals. With the implementation of CE – and PRs going away completely – the issue of ‘expired’ clearances may no longer be an issue. If an individual is enrolled in CE – and remains enrolled – an ‘expired’ investigation wouldn’t be a factor. But with only a percentage of the cleared population enrolled today, and many companies still initiating PRs, the issue of navigating terminal leave and an expiring clearance is unlikely to go away until the policy changes.