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I applied and accepted an offer to a role that required government security clearance. It's been over 7 months and now I'm finally cleared. After being cleared I noticed a lot of changes within the company that were not there during the interview process and that conflict with what I was looking for in a role.

My question is, I haven't been "signed-on," is what they call it, if I were to accept an offer from another company before being signed-on, with this one, would the other company be able to pick up my clearance or do I lose it and have to restart the process?

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Most likely yes, your security clearance will transfer.

Background checks for US security clearance are performed by the US government, not by the company you are working for. The company is mainly needed to sponsor you and pay for the investigation, but they do not control any aspect of the investigation itself. Whether or not you are working for the company doesn't change that the investigation has been completed by the government. When you apply to a new company, they can request your clearance information from the government.

That being said, when you are interviewing with the new company, be clear about your status and ask whether your clearance will transfer. It may be that the new company requires a clearance at a different level (e.g. confidential vs. secret) or from a different organization (e.g. intelligence vs. defense). Even if you expect that the answer will be yes, it is always better to ask.

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    "do I lose it and have to restart the process?" - The author does risk the lossing of their security clearance. The reason I say that, is the company is the sponsor, their need for the information and the author working for them, is the reason their clearance was approved in the first place. If the author moves on from their current position, their need for the information no longer exist, this comment is based on personal experience with government security clearances (nearly a decade). Their current employer has to be willing help in the process of transferring their clearance. – Donald Jan 3 '18 at 18:53

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