Background checks for gov. agencies

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Anonymous User
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Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:58 pm

I was curious, what sort of background checks to gov. agencies like FDIC, FTC, FCC etc. run... I am not talking here about the really tough ones like CIA/DOJ etc...
Particularly wondering whether the background goes down to 7 years, and whether economic info. (credit score) is included.

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Joe Quincy
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Joe Quincy » Mon Sep 02, 2013 5:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I was curious, what sort of background checks to gov. agencies like FDIC, FTC, FCC etc. run... I am not talking here about the really tough ones like CIA/DOJ etc...
Particularly wondering whether the background goes down to 7 years, and whether economic info. (credit score) is included.


Credit score is always included. The lowest form of check they can order for a new hire is NACLAC (National and Local agency) & credit. The length and whether in-person interviews are included depends on whether the position requires a clearance and whether it is a secret or top secret. Different agencies may call this different things but the most basic check will include credit.

Some agencies require less for lateral hires, which may or may not include a credit check.

Anonymous User
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 02, 2013 5:42 pm

Do you know the form that we will have to use and when (during interviews, beginning of job, earlier, later)? Is it SF 85 or SF86... basically I have to respond differently depending on whether I am supposed to go back 7 years.
Also, is it a good idea to play it safe and say yes... though you think the appropriate answer is no. I am not sure how good the memory of my friends would be. I tried recreative substances early in my college career, but stopped doing so later in my college career. Cannot tell whether my friends from that time will remember exactly when was my last time.

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mr. wednesday
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby mr. wednesday » Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:13 pm

They use different ones. I think DOJ/USAO typically do at least a SF86 but some positions need an adjudication, while others don't. Lots of agencies just do a SF85, except anything having to do with money/treasury, which I think uses a SF85P.

Either way, just disclose it, because lying would be worse. I've never filled out any background check pre-offer; usually it's within 6m of your start date. YMMV.

Anonymous User
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:49 pm

You won't have to give any background check information until you've been hired (they don't care until you've been hired; it's way too much money/work to do any degree of background check on candidates). Depending when you get hired for what start date, you might get background check stuff right away (if it's a litigating position, for instance, I think the check has to be complete before you can start - although that might just be DOJ).

FWIW, when interviewing for a post-grad permanent position through DOJ (I had already graduated/been admitted to the bar) I got told that the only dealbreakers were post-bar drug use, default on student loans, and failure to pay taxes. So I don't imagine the other agencies are stricter. Recreational drug use in college - especially the first part of college - is unlikely to faze anyone; if the idea is that you did recreational drugs in the early part of college, outside the 7 year scope, but friends you did the drugs with may not remember that it was outside that time, I would just say that - you used recreational drugs in college on occasion, some of which might fall just within the 7 years, but you don't remember/can't confirm specific dates.

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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:55 pm

Thanks for all of the advice. If the background checks occur around hiring time, I am totally in the clear, even if it is SF86. I hate these gov. forms cause they make me feel so paranoid.

lmr
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby lmr » Mon Sep 02, 2013 7:24 pm

I know many classmates who have accepted internships with the local DAs office and two weeks before their start dates were told they didn't pass the background check. Some were obvious (DUIs and other misdos) others were denied for being fired when they were 16 or failed to respond to a subpoena, etc. others swear they have no clue why/how they failed. Lots of these people were screwed out of interning bc they didn't have enough time to find a backup.

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Joe Quincy
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Re: Background checks for gov. agencies

Postby Joe Quincy » Mon Sep 02, 2013 9:30 pm

lmr wrote:I know many classmates who have accepted internships with the local DAs office and two weeks before their start dates were told they didn't pass the background check. Some were obvious (DUIs and other misdos) others were denied for being fired when they were 16 or failed to respond to a subpoena, etc. others swear they have no clue why/how they failed. Lots of these people were screwed out of interning bc they didn't have enough time to find a backup.


If your position requires a TS clearance, you have to go back 10 years for each question despite what the SF86 says.

No matter what, don't lie. Getting caught is an auto-ding for all future gov jobs and could end up with a criminal prosecution/debarment. They don't screw around. See 18 U.S.C. § 1001.




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