Case Types & Forms

When submitting forms for processing, DCSA requests that agencies ensure the date fields are written as MM/DD/2022 and avoid abbreviating as MM/DD/22.

Required and Optional Forms for Requesting Investigations

The type or level of investigation requested, and form type required are directly related to the risk and sensitivity level to which the position is designated. See below for the correlation of risk and sensitivity levels to investigation type and form type. In this section you will find:

  • Investigation, form type, and position designation equivalency

  • Form and Document requirements per case type

  • Tier 2 additional form requirements

  • Optional Form (OF) 306 "Declaration for Federal Employment"

  • Résumé or Application requirements

  • SF 85P-S usage requirements

  • E-QIP Third Party Data Entry (3PDE

  • Releases and Certifications

  • Special Attachments

Once the investigation type and form type are determined, other investigative documents may be necessary depending on whether the investigation is an initial or reinvestigation, and whether the individual needing the investigation is a Federal civilian, contractor, or military. Charts on this page outline how these factors affect the submission requirements for fingerprint charts, the OF 306, and résumés. The types of investigations DCSA offers along with the numeric codes used in the Agency Use Block (AUB) of the Standard Form are as follows:

NAC – National Agency Check (06)
T1 – Tier 1 (63)
T2 – Tier 2 (55)
T2R - Tier 2 Reinvestigation (56)
T4 – Tier 4 (66)
T4R – Tier 4 Reinvestigation (67)
T3 - Tier 3 (64)
T3R - Tier 3 Reinvestigation (65)
T5 – Tier 5 (70)
T5R – Tier 5 Reinvestigation (71)

Position Designation, Form Type and Investigation Type

Although the Position Designation System will show the required investigation and form type by determining the sensitivity and risk level, table 2 depicts the correlation between position designation, investigation types, reinvestigation types and form types.

Final Sensitivity Designation from the Position Designation System/Tool Final Risk Designation from the Position Designation System/Tool Type of Investigation Reinvestigsation Designated Position Form Type
Special or Critical-Sensitive "High Risk" T5 (70) T5R (71) SF 86
Non-critical Sensitive "High Risk" T5 (70) T5R (71) SF 86
"Moderate Risk" T3 (64) T3R (65) SF 86
Non-Sensitive Public Trust "High Risk" T4 (66) T4R (67) SF 85P
"Moderate Risk" T2 (55) T2R (56) SF 85P
Non-sensitive "Low Risk" T1 (63) No Reinvestigation Requirement SF 85

The Tier 2 investigative product no longer includes the Optional Enhanced Security Interview (ESI) unless there are Expandable Focused Interview (EFI) flags within the submitted investigative paperwork, to include the Additional Questions for Moderate Risk Positions.

Form and Document Submission Requirements

Investigation Type and Form Type Fingerprints OF 306
-SF 85
-SF 87 ONLY Required when discrepant information exists between OF 306 and SF 85
-SF 85P
-SF 87 ONLY Required when discrepant information exists between OF 306 and SF 85P
-SF 85P
-SF 87 N/A
-SF 85P
-SF 87 ONLY Required when discrepant information exists between OF 306 and SF 85P
-SF 85P
-SF 87 N/A
-SF 86
-SF 87 ONLY Required when discrepant information exists between OF 306 and SF 86
-SF 86
-An SF 87 is only required if no prior classifiable results exist N/A
-SF 86
-SF 87 ONLY Required when discrepant information exists between OF 306 and SF 86
-SF 86
-An SF 87 is only required if no prior classifiable results exist N/A

Until further notice, fingerprints may be submitted on the SF 87 or FD-258. Agencies are strongly encouraged to submit electronic fingerprints instead of submission of hard card charts.
2If one of the following position titles are used on the submission, the OF 306 is not required: Summer Hire, Student, Intern, Volunteer, Humanitarian, Extern, or Military

Optional Form (OF) 306 "Declaration for Federal Employment"

The OF 306 is a form utilized to collect information during the hiring process to determine an individual's acceptability for Federal employment and Federal contract employment. It is also used to determine an appointee's status in the Government's Life Insurance program when the appointee has been previously employed by the Federal Government. Although the OF 306 is an optional form, providing the specific information requested by the OF 306 is not optional when OF 306 information is required for the investigation submission per the above tables.

The OF 306 information should only be submitted when there is a discrepancy between information provided on the standard form and the OF 306 information. The individual and agency should carefully review the OF 306 information and any attached sheets. If additional space is needed, the individual may provide material on additional sheets. Any amendments to the OF 306 will require the individual being investigated to initial and date the amendments.

View the Latest Version of the OF 306 

Application or Resume

An application or résumé should only be submitted to DCSA when there is a substantive discrepancy between the application/résumé and the Standard Form, and your agency needs that discrepancy addressed during the investigation.

Agencies sending the résumé to DCSA for review and scheduling must use FIPC Code “1B” in the AUB block of the Standard Form. Additionally, complete information for the residence, employment or education which the agency wishes DCSA to address will be required before DCSA schedules the investigation. To avoid delays in scheduling provide any needed supplemental information for the application/résumé on a separate document as an “ATA” attachment within e-QIP.

As agency submitting offices are responsible for comparing the application/résumé to the Standard Form, applications/résumés provided with investigation requests without FIPC Code “1B” on the AUB will not be reviewed by DCSA. However the applications or résumés will be provided with the investigation results to the SOI for adjudicative purposes with a comment alerting the SOI that the application/résumé was not requested to be reviewed by DCSA.

Standard Forms: Additional Information

All information requested on Standard Form (SF) questionnaires is essential for the expeditious investigation scheduling and processing. The Submitting Office (SON) is responsible for ensuring completeness of the SF 85, SF 85P, SF 85P-S, and SF 86. The agency must have an individual complete all information required, as DCSA will not accept incomplete investigation requests. Refer to table 2 for the correct investigation types to be used with each form. Automated case scheduling is based on zip codes and other data provided by the individual. Consequently, complete and accurate information on the investigative forms is extremely important to the overall investigative process. Incorrect zip codes, missing addresses, or gaps in dates may cause delays or rejection of the request.

Standard Form (SF) 85P-S, "Supplemental Questionnaire for Selected Positions"

The SF 85P-S is used only as an exception to standards. It contains additional questions regarding drug use, alcohol use, and mental health treatment that may be required for certain specified positions. Agencies with unique position requirements must request approval from DCSA to use this form. If you are uncertain if your agency has the required approval, or whether this form is appropriate for a particular position, contact DCSA at 878-274-1171 (option 3 for e-QIP).

Third Party Data Entry (3PDE)

DCSA does not accept hardcopy Standard Forms. DCSA recognizes that there are instances in which individuals may not be able to enter information directly into their e-QIP forms. To fulfill this need, DCSA created Fillable versions of the Standard Forms for use in the Third Party Data Entry process. 3PDE allows an authorized Agency e-QIP User to initiate a request in e-QIP and enter the individual's provided standard form information giving the requesting agencies the benefit of data validation in e-QIP.

An authorized e-QIP User must have the specific group role of "Third Party Entry" (TPE) in order to enter data in e-QIP on behalf of an individual. TPE agency users are presented with a disclaimer page of instructions at the beginning of the data entry. TPE agency users must acknowledge acceptance of these instructions before continuing with the data entry of the individual's standard form. Upon completion of data entry, the agency user will present the individual with the archival copy and e-QIP generated signature pages for review and signatures. Once signature pages are signed by the individual, agency users with the e-QIP role of "Reviewer" or "Approver" are required to upload signature pages to the e-QIP investigation request.

Agency users with the "Reviewer" and "Approver" roles in e-QIP are able to manage the completed third party data entered investigation request just as any other investigation request in e-QIP. The Agency Use Block (AUB) tab in e-QIP is still required to be completed accordingly by a TPE, Reviewer, or Approver in e-QIP.

Certification and Releases

A Certification and General Release are required with every investigation request. Standard Investigative forms such as the SF 85, SF 85P, SF 85P-S, or SF 86 must be submitted to DCSA within 120 days of the date that an individual electronically certified their Standard Form within the e-QIP system (not the date written on the Certification page if the individual signed their Certification page with pen and ink). Investigations rely on current information provided by the individual on the SF; therefore, investigation requests released to DCSA with certifications that were signed in e-QIP more than 120 days ago are deemed "unacceptable" for processing and returned to the requesting agency without action.

Certifications and releases printed from e-QIP contain the request ID of the questionnaire completed by the individual. The request ID printed on the Certification and releases must match the e-QIP investigation request ID being submitted to DCSA. The FCR is required to be submitted to DCSA with all investigations. Information regarding acceptable electronic format of attachments and guidance on how to electronically attach these items may be found in the e-QIP Job aids maintained in the NP2 Secure Portal or through e-QIP help screens accessed via the help menus in e-QIP.

e-QIP has the ability to accept electronically imaged attachments as part of the investigation request. The imaged attachments include the signed investigation questionnaire Certification, releases, and special attachments. This does not include fingerprint charts. Please see fingerprints tab (link to fingerprints tab) for information about submission of fingerprints.

Submit the Medical Release, "Authorization for Release of Medical Information Pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)", with an investigation request to DCSA when the SF 86 contains a positive response to the mental health section (section/question 21 – Psychological and Emotional Health). An agency should also submit the Medical Release if there is a positive response to question 5 on the SF 85P-S. The request ID printed on the Medical Release must match the request ID of the e-QIP investigation submission. Reminder: Agencies must have a special agreement for use of the supplemental portion of the SF 85P, which is the SF 85P-S.

Click to Sign (Use of Digital Signatures within e-QIP)

Click to Sign provides individuals the ability to digitally "sign" their Certification and releases. The Click to Sign signature process is a separate process from digitally signing a document with Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Cards or Common Access Cards (CAC). This functionality is now available for the Certification page, Fair Credit Reporting Release, General Release and Medical Release. Applicants can still opt-out of signing their documents digitally and may still print, sign and either upload as a scanned attachment, upload via the fax-solution, or mail hardcopy to their sponsoring agency (sponsoring agency must electronically attach these hardcopy documents prior to releasing their request to DCSA). Information and instructions for the e-QIP Fax Solution can be found within the e-QIP Help-screens on the agency attachment screens. For more instructions/details concerning e-QIP Click to Sign, please visit the Digitally Signed Releases page and read the e-QIP Help-screens on the attachment screens within e-QIP.

Special Attachments

Agencies may provide special attachments with the investigation request, such as license or certificate; issue information; individuals in the U.S. who can verify activities outside the United States; agency-conducted subject interview or pre-appointment checks; and any other pertinent information. To notify DCSA of special attachments provided with the submission, use Extra Coverage Code 7 when completing the Agency Use Block (AUB).