DOD Central Adjudication Facility Transformation and Adjudication Timeliness

In May 2012 the DOD made the decision to consolidate all of the various component Central Adjudication Facilities (CAF) into one in order to streamline processes, improve efficiency, and standardize the adjudicative process across the spectrum to develop a level of trust when applying reciprocity. The transition phase started in January 2013 and the CAFs from these agencies were all rolled into one: Joint Chiefs Staff; Washington Headquarters; DISCO; DOHA; Army; Air Force; and Navy.

Now that the DOD CAF is fully implemented and operational, they are preparing to incorporate the revised federal investigation standards and new continuous evaluation processes that came about from security clearance reforms enacted by lawmakers. At the latest National Industrial Security Program Policy Advisory Committee (NISPPAC) meeting held at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in Washington D.C. last week, presenters disclosed the latest adjudication statistics for Federal “end to end” timeliness for initial clearances as noted below.

The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA)”end to end” goal is less than 60 days

Agency # of Days
Department of Defense 57
Department of Homeland Security 129
Department of Energy 77
Department of Health and Human Services 130
Department of Justice 111
Office of Personnel Management 58
Department of Transportation 61
Department of Interior 100
Nuclear Regulatory Commission 92
Department of Treasury 103
Veteran’s Administration 82
Department of Agriculture 83
Department of Commerce 68
National Aeronautics and Space Administration 70
General Services Administration 103
National Archives and Records Administration 1177
Environmental Protection Agency 65
Department of Labor 151
Federal Trade Commission 126
Department of Education 359
National Science Foundation 107


The overall Industry workload through October 2014 showed that the 8.1% backlog of cases from FY 2013 was reduced to 3.1%, with the anticipation of being able to close that out by late 2015.

Comment Archive

  1. Avatar

    I recently talked to my FSO about the clearance timeframe statistics provided with the various NISPPAC meeting minutes, and all I received in response was laughter. After pressing a bit, one of the security folks who was aware of the reports bluntly stated that those statistics simply do not reflect real-world conditions, especially as they pertain to the adjudication phase. For example, at our facility, the typical adjudication period for a TS is typically 4-5 months. Well, unless a Congressmen gets involved, then it suddenly becomes a couple of weeks. DON’T be that person, though, for obvious reasons.

    • Avatar

      I would argue that there are agencies within each component that do adjudicate no issue cases within 21 days. I myself have adjudicated most cases that don’t require further inquires and/or documentation within 10 days of closing, so the numbers are just that, numbers. They are designed to show those who hold the purse strings and make policy guidance that things are working.