Security clearance possible for long-term expatriate?


I'm thinking seriously of joining the Army Reserve but I think I might fall at the first hurdle. I hold UK citizenship and have done since birth, but I've been living in Poland continuously since 2003 excluding 2007-9 when I was back. I know that potential recruits have to be cleared before they can join, but I don't know if there is any way for the MoD to do that for people in my position, who have almost no reference points in the UK in their recent backgrounds. My age is against me moving back to the UK to build up history, because I'll be 48 tomorrow. So if there is no procedure for running checks on me as the expatriate I am now, I think I'm stymied.

I have trawled this forum for answers but I haven't turned up anything pertinent and dating from not too long back. If I've missed information that is here, sorry for wasting your time, and I'll take the chiding that I'll deserve!

Thanks in advance for all replies.
Have a look here for general guidance and a bit of detail on the various levels (there is also a help desk to call):

Also, your prospective cab badge/trade will have different requirements. For instance, some R SIGNALS/Int Corps roles may require you to have SC/DV clearance, where the checking process is longer/more in depth than CTC and includes interviews with yourself, family and referees. Talk it over with your recruiter to see exactly what you need and remember: HIDE NOTHING AT ALL during the clearance process.

Good luck!

Snapper 25

I think you have to have lived in the uk for 5 years. Or that might be for foreigners who want to join.
Your best just applying because the whole process takes a while.
I was in a similar boat to yourself. I had to wait a year and a half to apply for CTC. I would imagine each case is dealt with on an individual basis. Good luck.
From my son's experience , it's five years continuous residence in the UK, 10 years if you want to do anything that requires what used to be called PV.
On the five years they say individual cases can be considered on merit.
However, you have to get past the Capita computer judgement first.
Thanks to all who replied. Planning as I am to remain living outside the UK it looks like a probable no-go from what you've written. I'll get a final yea or nay from the Army anyway and post again with what I learn.


You don't need a CTC for all Army roles yet.
Some roles you can get by with a BPSS, which is just an identity check.

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