Frequently Asked Questions
Industrial Security Program
These FAQs are provided solely for informational purposes. Nothing in these FAQs affects, replaces or supersedes any provision of law applicable to industrial security clearance cases.
1. What is the difference between industrial security clearance cases and personal appearance cases?
An industrial security clearance case involves the adjudication of the security eligibility of officers and employees of defense contractors under Executive Order 10865 and DoD Directive 5220.6.
A personal appearance case involves the adjudication of the security eligibility of military personnel and civilian employees of the Department of Defense under Executive Order 12968 and DoD Manual 5200.02
2. What procedures are used for industrial security clearance hearings and appeals?
The procedures for industrial security clearance hearings and appeals are set forth in DoD Directive 5220.6, with details appearing in the Additional Procedural Guidance portion of that Directive. The DOHA Hearing Office also sends to applicants a copy of Prehearing Guidance for DOHA Hearings. When the Appeal Board receives a timely notice of appeal, it sends to the parties a copy of Appeal Instructions. The Prehearing Guidance for DOHA Hearings and the Appeal Instructions do not replace or supersede the provisions of the Directive, they merely supplement the Directive's provisions.
3. What do the industrial security case numbers mean?
Each case received by DOHA is assigned a case number. The first two digits of the case number reflect the calendar year in which the case was received. The rest of the digits reflect the order in which the case was received by DOHA. For example, the first case received by DOHA in 1997 was assigned 97-0001, the second case was assigned 97-0002, the third case was assigned 97-0003, and so on.
4. Why do there seem to be "gaps" in the case numbers of industrial security clearance decisions?
Not all industrial security clearance cases result in a decision being written. Some cases are adjudicated favorably (i.e., the person is granted a security clearance). Some of the cases are withdrawn when security clearance is no longer required or the applicant terminates employment. Other cases are defaulted when the applicant fails to respond to the Statement of Reasons. None of the cases closed out by this stage result in written decisions. Only cases adjudicated by DOHA Administrative Judges in the Hearing Office result in written decisions, some of which are appealed to the DOHA Appeal Board.
5. Why are there fewer Appeal Board decisions than Hearing Office decisions?
Of the industrial security cases adjudicated by the Hearing Office, only about 25-33% (sometimes fewer) are appealed to the DOHA Appeal Board. Some of the appeals are withdrawn by the appealing party or are closed out by default. Only appeals that result in a written decision by the Appeal Board are posted on the DOHA Web site.
6. Industrial security decisions are listed with case numbers that include endings such as ".a1", ".a2", ".h1", and .h2". What is the meaning of those endings?
The endings were added to the digital copies of the decisions so the computer would distinguish between different Hearing Office and Appeal Board decisions in the same case. Decisions ending with ".h [number]" were issued by the Hearing Office. Decisions ending with ".a [number]" were issued by the Appeal Board. The number indicates the number of times the Hearing Office or Appeal Board issued decisions in the case. Multiple decisions in a case occur when the Appeal Board remands the case to the Hearing Office and the Administrative Judge issues a new decision in the case. If the new decision is appealed, it may result in another Appeal Board decision.