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  • Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

    Hey guys,

    I am a prior service 11B that just recently finished my B.S. and currently pursuing my masters. I want to reenlist in the NJ National Guard as an officer but I have some concerns about my ability to obtain a security clearance.

    Currently I have about 5-7 delinquent debts that I have not made an effort to pay since returning to college due to a lack of income from part-time employment. Of these accounts 2 are repossessions, I voluntarily surrendered them when I left my old job in 2009 but that doesn't really matter since they are reported as repossessed. With the repossessions and the other debts the total is about $20,000-$25,000. Without the vehicle repossessions I am looking at about $10,000 in c.c debt.

    I did not realize this would effect me in terms of getting into the military and I am set to go to MEPS on 25OCT12 which is this Thursday. I am almost 100% sure that I will be denied my security clearance from the appeals I have seen and research I have done online.

    1st question: Would it be a better option to either 1) Go to MEPS and get denied or 2) Push my MEPS date back and try and make arrangements to pay these debts down?

    2nd question: Does it make sense to go in as enlisted for a term and get the credit squared away and later apply for OCS? Keep in mind I am now 30 years old.

    Thanks

    JB

  • #2
    Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

    Have you taken any steps to work with your creditors? Have you validated this on your credit report?

    Did you attempt a deferment?

    Good credit is imperative in establishing financial responsibility. If you ever require any form of loan or special payment for a cable, phone, gas, water bill; your credit will be checked.

    It is good that you are learning this lesson now so you can start taking hold of your financial responsibilities.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

      Originally posted by fmcityslicker View Post
      Have you taken any steps to work with your creditors? Have you validated this on your credit report?

      Did you attempt a deferment?

      Good credit is imperative in establishing financial responsibility. If you ever require any form of loan or special payment for a cable, phone, gas, water bill; your credit will be checked.

      It is good that you are learning this lesson now so you can start taking hold of your financial responsibilities.

      No I have not attempted to work anything out with the creditors, to be honest I was just going to put them to the side until I finished college and started working full-time again. Clearly that is no longer an option. I have not attempted a deferment with my c.c accounts.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

        I was referring to student loans when it comes to deferment. Do you have any income coming in at this time? Part-time job? Are you using the Post 9/11 GI Bill for school or exhausted it?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

          Oh yes the student loans are on deferment, I did not include them in the above listed debt.

          I have a part-time job so I do have a few hundred dollars coming in every month.

          I already exhausted my GI Bill. :/

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

            I was looking at another option, what about doing the ROTC/SMP option, would that delay my security clearance long enough for me to get these credit issues taken care of?

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

              Paralegal and others will chime in on this but I saw go forward with the investigation and write a letter to each of the credit bureaus/creditors on your circumstances. I do not know how you stopped paying those debts because there will be people that advise to simply ignore if the debts happened over some time. But since you are applying for a clearance; the best thing to do is to pay all of them off.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                Most debts stay on your credit report for 7.5 years from the FIRST DATE OF DELINQUENCY without bringing the account current again.

                With that said, for the amount of money and time it is going to take you to clear up these types of major issues would probably be longer than the 3 more years or so you have to go before they just fall off of your report. If this happened in 2009, it is almost 2013 now, you do the math with what you make.

                There isn't really any way to show good faith on the repos because it isn't a debt you can pay on. So even if you cleaned up the other crap you would still have a credit issue.

                I posted many times about disputing items, and using only an "item verify request"...use the search feature and pull those posts. (and just so we are clear, yes you can dispute items that are really yours, and it has a good success rate).

                I recommend you wait a couple years, dispute the items (maybe get lucky there), and then pursue officer.

                I am not sure at what point in the ROTC/SMP program they process a clearance, but that sounds like a plan to me if someone can verify they do the clearance at time of commission. That gives you at least two years to dispute and worse case scenario you could probably delay said commission for another 1.5 until those items disappear on their own.

                In you overall scenario, I think paying anything on those debts already deemed delinquent and charged off at such a large amount will yield the exact same result as using a match to light your dollar bills on fire, it just won't help you.

                Time is what you need. (with continued good credit).
                Last edited by ParalegalNCO1; October 23rd, 2012, 08:34 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                  Just now noticed you are 30....ROTC may not be an option, you will have to verify that with the school you plan on attending.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                    I can only speak from a security standpoint. I'm not sure what MEPS standards are but as far as getting an actual security clearance granted by the Army, delinquent debt will prohibit that. If you have bills of virtually any amount charged-off and not being paid, they will send a letter of denial and you will enter due process to attempt to rebutt that letter. If your response is "I'm waiting for them to fall off after 7-10 years" it will be denied.

                    If the bills were once charged off and you are now paying them, at any payment level, provided it is satisfactory between you and the collectors or who you owe, you will be okay. You might have some explaining to do to the Army but making good faith efforts to pay works.

                    This is actually the biggest reason I deal with security clearance issues. Disputes over bills, charge offs, late payments. It all spells no good. If you owe $10k on something and it charges off... start paying. Even if its $20 a month. Just enter some form of payment plan and stick to it.

                    MEPS usually has some different security qualifications, I hear they disqualify some people for issues who would ultimately get a clearance.

                    I just recently helped someone in my unit who had terrible credit and couldnt commission due to not being able to get a security clearance. Shoot me a pm, we're in the same state. He commissioned a few months ago. I'll see what you need to do.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                      Originally posted by show_stopper999 View Post
                      I can only speak from a security standpoint. I'm not sure what MEPS standards are but as far as getting an actual security clearance granted by the Army, delinquent debt will prohibit that. If you have bills of virtually any amount charged-off and not being paid, they will send a letter of denial and you will enter due process to attempt to rebutt that letter. If your response is "I'm waiting for them to fall off after 7-10 years" it will be denied.
                      I agree with you, but you have to place reality vs time vs money. If it took him 2 years to get commission, it would be silly to start paying on it, if it has the potential to just go away.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                        Yea so the ROTC/SMP opt. doesn't make sense since they said I would have to go do my clearance soon as I contract. I recruiter is suggesting I enlist and work on getting the issues corrected and later apply for OCS, does this seem like a good route or is it a numbers game for him?

                        I was in civilian law enforcement for almost 6 years before returning to college so I would want to go MP but I am told I would need a security clearance for that too. I was 11B when I was younger, I don't really feel like crawling through the mud anymore, if you know what I mean.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                          If your debts are charged off or more then a few years old you may have the same problem I did. I contacted my creditors to set up payment arrangements. THey were glad to do thta but because of the age of the debts they would NOT send me a letter that stated we had payments arrangements set up - something you would need to show for your clearance. What I ended up doing is debt consolidation that shows all of my debts included in it and it shows my monthly payment and each payment i have made. I don't know if this will work or not (waiting for a medical waiver)but that is what the security investigator at MEPS told my recruiter to tell me to do. Just be careful if you go that route. Find a good company that isn't going to rip you off.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                            Originally posted by robinpugs06 View Post
                            If your debts are charged off or more then a few years old you may have the same problem I did. I contacted my creditors to set up payment arrangements. THey were glad to do thta but because of the age of the debts they would NOT send me a letter that stated we had payments arrangements set up - something you would need to show for your clearance. What I ended up doing is debt consolidation that shows all of my debts included in it and it shows my monthly payment and each payment i have made. I don't know if this will work or not (waiting for a medical waiver)but that is what the security investigator at MEPS told my recruiter to tell me to do. Just be careful if you go that route. Find a good company that isn't going to rip you off.
                            Yea my debts are about 3-4 years old. Since I've been in school I haven't tried to pay them off, I figured I'd wait until I graduated. So much for that working out. I just signed up to that Lexington Law Service to dispute credit issues. I also want to get payment arrangements with the known past due accounts.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Questions for Security Clearance credit issues.

                              Does anyone know if it will hurt me if I am denied a clearance and later reapply or will that not matter?

                              Also does anyone know if the MP clearance is a confidential or a secret? Online it says that it is a confidential but the recruiter said he has to double check but he is 95% sure it's a secret.

                              Comment

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