U.S. Department of Justice Security and Suitability Review Process

From the  U.S. Department of Justice:

If you are applying or have applied to the DOJ, please note that the determination of a candidate’s suitability is different from a security clearance. All attorneys and legal interns will have a suitability review and determination made by the Office of Attorney Recruitment and Management (OARM) and, if a candidate’s position requires access to classified information, the Department’s Security Staff will determine whether to grant a security clearance.   Both a suitability determination and a security clearance are based on the information provided to us by the candidate on their completed security forms and information contained in the background investigation (BI), if one is required.   It should be noted that a BI is only required for those candidates who work at the Department for six months or more.  For most law students, given the limited duration of their time at DOJ, the suitability review will not include a BI; it will be limited to a credit check, the security forms, a fingerprint check, and a check of prior employers. For more information, please visit the DOJ’s Security and Suitability (Background Information) page online.

The OARM’s decisions on potential suitability for employment are made after careful consideration of the totality of the circumstances, including any aggravating and/or mitigating factors.  Because the final decision is fact-specific the use of terms such as “bright line” disqualifiers can be misleading and the DOJ does not want students or attorneys to prematurely opt out of the application process.

If you have a questions, please contact Denyse Demel, Government Career Counselor, at ddemel@law.utexas.edu.