Using Spouse’s Prescription Medication is Considered Misuse
In the Illegal Drug Use section of the SF-86 it asks “In the last seven years, have you intentionally engaged in the misuse of prescription drugs, regardless of whether or not the drugs were prescribed for you or someone else?” Clearance holders and applicants should pay attention to the wording of this question and the consequences if you are tempted to forego a visit to the doctor to get a prescription and instead, decide to take a shortcut and use a friend’s, relatives, or co-workers prescription medication. Misuse of prescription drugs is actually quite common and the most common types of drugs involved are hydrocodone, oxycodone, ambien, valium, and various muscle relaxers. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence Security Executive Agent Directive (SEAD) 4 – National Security Adjudicative Guidelines outline why this is a concern and how it may be mitigated.
In a recent Department of Energy appeal case a clearance holder had her clearance revoked after it was disclosed during her subject interview that she had been taking her husband’s Xanax prescription medication on multiple occasions over the course of 8 years. Fortunately for her, she was able to convince the judge that she was unaware it was illegal to use her husband’s prescription, stating it was natural for them to share everything, including medications. Because she was forthcoming about the use, it was infrequent, and she now realizes the ramifications and vowed to cease any future similar behavior, she was able to mitigate the concerns and the administrative judge had her clearance reinstated.