Friday, May 22, 2009

Ask the Wizard: Denial of License

Each Friday, the Wizard joins us to share an answer to one of the questions asked during the week.

Will a bad credit score prevent me from obtaining my license?

While it is impossible to answer this question with a 100% guarantee, a low credit score will not automatically preclude someone from obtaining a license. A bankruptcy might throw up a little flag for additional investigation. The primary concern is whether an applicant has a history of fraud or could be susceptible to pressures that make them more likely to assist in smuggling, defrauding the U.S. government or compromising national security. Your local port office may be able to provide some additional information. Click HERE for a list of these ports.

While we are on this topic, it is a good time to discuss other issues that might prevent an applicant from obtaining a license. Part 111.16 provides a broad list of reasons a license might be denied. Some people worry that an arrest that happened years ago might keep them from obtaining a license. It all depends on the nature of the arrest. Arrests or convictions do not necessarily preclude the issuance of a license; however, lying on the application or to a CBP officer will kill the chances of obtaining the license. Even if you think the officer won’t find out, do not lie on the application or any document associated with the application. This includes verbal statements made to any CBP officer. Do not omit information. The regulations are clear on making false statements and omitting required information. As an example, an agent asked a person applying for a license about drugs. The person did not tell the agent about being caught with a small amount of marijuana when he was 18. It was not the drugs that caused the denial, but the failure to tell the agent about it. Lying or omitting relevant facts demonstrates dishonesty and lack of integrity and moral character. Review the list of actions that can cause denial or revocation of a license in 19 CFR 111.16 and 19 CFR 111.53. Please, do not be tempted to omit facts or not tell the whole truth when completing the application or talking with the agent during the interview. Think about how hard you worked to pass the exam and take the right path, the one that will lead you to the license you have earned.

Do you have a question for the Wizard? Submit your question by clicking on the link in the space for “Ask the Wizard.” Maybe the Wizard will have a question for the blog readers next week. See you next Friday!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is a great question. I was worried that my credit history would be a problem when I applied for my license. It did cause the process to take longer than normal and I had to submit an explanation letter of my past credit problems. However I ended up receiving the license anyway. So bottom line is you never know. I think more than one bankruptcy and/or property foreclosure would cause a problem and lead to a denial.