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How to Submit a TWIC Waiver Request | FAQs

If you were issued a Preliminary Determination of Ineligibility in response to your TWIC application, you may be considering filing for a TWIC waiver.  If you are eligible for a TWIC waiver, you are strongly encouraged to apply for one as the TSA grants many waiver applications.

When it comes to applying for a waiver, we also recommend that you seek the advice of an experienced TWIC waiver lawyer.  If your TWIC card has been denied or revoked, this most likely means that your job and/or potential career are at stake.  Thus, you will want to ensure that your waiver is appropriate, accurate, and as persuasive as possible.

Am I Eligible for a Waiver?

Determining whether or not you are eligible for a waiver, an appeal, or both is the first step of the process.  Those individuals who have certain permanent disqualifying offenses on their record are eligible for a waiver.  Moreover, all interim disqualifying offenses are eligible for a waiver.  In addition, immigrant workers with Temporary Protected Status are also eligible to apply for a waiver.

If you are unsure of whether you should be filing for an appeal, a waiver, or both, you should immediately contact a TWIC lawyer.  It is vital that you apply for the appropriate relief, as appeals and waivers have different requirements that need to be met and will require different types of legal arguments and/or documentary evidence to support them.

How Does the TSA Determine Whether I Should Be Granted a Waiver?

The standard that the TSA applies in determining whether or not your request for a waiver should be granted if whether or not you “pose a security threat.”  In determining whether you meet this standard, the TSA will look at several factors including: the age of the offense; the length of time you have been released from incarceration; your criminal history both before and after the disqualifying offense; the circumstances surrounding the offense; the nature of the offense; and your reputation and character among many other factors.

When Do I Have to Submit My Waiver Request?

Your waiver request may be submitted any time after you received your Preliminary Determination of Ineligibility.  If you fail to respond to the Preliminary Determination of Ineligibility, the TSA will thereafter send you a Final Determination of Threat Assessment.  Your request for a waiver must be submitted no later than 60 days after you receive the Final Determination of Threat Assessment, unless an extension of time is granted.  Extensions will only be granted if you can establish “good cause” for failing to file your waiver request within the original time period.

What Should My Request for a Waiver Include?

The answer to this question will depend on the specific facts of your case.  Thus, it is best to consult with a TWIC waiver lawyer to determine what should be included in your waiver application and what arguments you should make in support of your waiver application.

In general, however, your TWIC waiver application will consist of a formal letter to the TSA requesting a waiver and explaining the legal basis for your request.  You will also want to discuss any factors that demonstrate that you are not a security threat and that you have been rehabilitated.  In addition, you will want to cover each of the factors mentioned above that the TSA will consider in evaluating your application, such as the circumstances surrounding the disqualifying offense, the age of the offense, your conduct since the offense, details about your personal and/or professional life, etc.

In addition to discussing all of the above in your waiver application, you will also want to include as much documentary evidence as you can in support of your position.  It is imperative that documents such as the following are submitted with your application:

  • Documentary evidence demonstrating rehabilitation (such as completion certificates for rehabilitation programs);
  • Any awards or certificates you have received;
  • Court documentation showing that you complied with your sentence;
  • Expungement records;
  • Character reference letters from probation officers, employers, community officials, and/or friends and family members;
  • Court documentation relating to the underlying offense such as plea and sentencing transcripts, dispositions, judgments of conviction, police reports, etc.;
  • Documents referencing any volunteer work or charitable activities; and
  • Educational or training degrees, certificates, or diplomas.

How Long Until I Receive a Decision?

After submitting your application, TSA will review your waiver request and will thereafter make a recommendation to the Director of Security Threat Evaluation, who will determine whether or not to grant your waiver application.  Within 60 days of the TSA receiving your application, they will send you a written letter regarding their final decision.

Experienced TWIC Waiver Lawyers

If you have questions about your TWIC waiver application, contact the TWIC lawyers at Brett O’Brien Law, LLC today for a free consultation.  We will review your Preliminary Determination of Ineligibility free of charge to determine whether you should apply for an appeal, a waiver, or both.

If we determine a waiver is necessary, we will gather the appropriate documentation given your circumstances and thereafter prepare a persuasive and comprehensive waiver application on your behalf. Call us today for a free and confidential consultation.

About the Author

Brett O'Brien, Esq.
Brett O'Brien, Esq.

Brett O’Brien specializes in security clearance appeals. He has dedicated his career to learning the entire security clearance process from start to finish. He started his journey by working for the federal government before entering private practice. Learn more about Brett here.

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