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    Frequently Asked Questions::Many contractors say that a security clearance is needed to apply for their jobs. How...

    Many contractors say that a security clearance is needed to apply for their jobs. How can I get a clearance in advance so I can apply for these jobs? Can I pay for it myself?

    Federal Government regulations do not present requirements that allow for an individual to independently apply for an investigation, positions maintained by contractor, or security clearance. Clearances are based on investigations requested by Federal agencies, appropriate to specific positions and their duties. Until a person is offered such a position, the government will not request or pay for an investigation for a clearance. Once a person has been offered a job, in order for the person to be eligible to hold the Federal position or work on behalf of the Federal Government, a sponsoring Federal agency will require the person to complete a Standard Form 86, Questionnaire for National Security Positions. The sponsoring agency that requested the individual fill out the standard form will then initiate the investigation, adjudicate the results, and issue the appropriate clearance.

    Some Defense Department contractors require applicants to already have a clearance, and they have the right to administer their personnel hiring procedures the way they want as long as they don't discriminate based on prohibited factors (such as race or religion). Persons who already have clearances are those who are already employed by a government contractor (or by the government itself) and are looking for other job opportunities.

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