Consolidated Adjudication Services (CAS) Overview


Security Clearance Eligibility: A determination that a person is able and willing to safeguard classified national security information and/or occupy a national security sensitive position. The thre national security clearance eligibility levels are: Confidential, Secret, and Top Secret. Military members, federal employees, or contractors who require access to classified national security information and/or assignment to a national security position must be granted security clearance eligibility at the proper level to access that information or occupy the national security sensitive position.

The Adjudication Process: The adjudication process is based on decisions made by applying a standard set of guidelines to an individual’s specific circumstances. Trained adjudicators assess an individual's loyalty, trustworthiness, and reliability and determine whether it is in the best interest of national security to grant the individual an eligibility for access to classified information or render a favorable suitability determination.

National Security Determinations: National security determinations are governed by the principles established by Executive Order 12968 adjudicative guidelines are established by Security Executive Agent Directive 4.

Suitability/Fitness: Suitability refers to a person's character or conduct that may have an impact on the integrity or efficiency of the individual’s government service. Suitability adjudicative determinations are in accordance with Title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 731. Fitness determinations are made under separate guidelines determined by the entities making the decisions.

Fitness: Fitness refers to the adjudicative decision made on excepted service, contractor, and other federal personnel working for or on behalf of the federal government. These adjudicative guidelines are like suitability guidelines but governed by different regulations. Instead of being governed by Title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 731 (5 CFR 731), fitness determinations are made under separate guidelines determined by the entities making the decisions. Although no one standard exists for fitness decisions, the Chief Human Capital Officer (CHCO) within the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issued “Contractor Fitness Adjudication — Best Practices” guidance in 2013, which can be found on the CHCO website here.  

The 2004 Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 (HSPD-12) implemented a requirement for a federal standard for secure and reliable forms of identification, establishing the use of Personal Identity Verification (PIV) cards.

Clearance Eligibility Levels

  • (C) Confidential
  • (S) Secret
  • (TS) Top Secret

Types of Adjudication

  • HSPD-12 adjudication
  • Suitability adjudication under 5 CFR 731
  • Fitness determinations that are equivalent to criteria in 5 CFR 731
  • National Security adjudication under Executive Order 12968
  • Other agency authorities

Additional Information

The servicing SMO/FSO initiates the process for the applicant to submit a Questionnaire for National Security Positions Standard Form 86 (SF86) through [via] the online eQIP portal. Click here to preview the information required to complete the form. If you need further assistance, please contact your security office.

An individual who has received a final revocation or denial of their security clearance from the DCSA Consolidated Adjudication Services (CAS) may appeal a decision through the Personnel Security Appeals Board (PSAB) of the associated military service branch or the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals (DOHA), the legal entity managing the case. Specific guidance for appealing a decision is provided directly to the applicants within the final decision packages.


Standard Forms Link -