TSA PreCheck Requirements

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TSA PreCheck Requirements

If you’ve been convicted as either a criminal mastermind or an international spy, you can forget about skipping the security line the next time you head to the airport. 

But for most people, including those with some criminal pasts, the TSA PreCheck program offers an opportunity to skip the full shoes-off treatment at an airport security checkpoint. Instead, this security screening process includes background checks and fingerprinting to identify low-risk travelers departing from airports within the United States.

Is it a good fit for you? Let’s take a look at TSA PreCheck requirements.

What Is TSA PreCheck? 

Part of the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s Trusted Traveler program, TSA PreCheck is an option that allows eligible travelers expedited screening to get through TSA security checkpoint in—usually—less than five minutes. 

The special TSA PreCheck line is available at more than 200 participating airports and 80 airlines for both domestic and international air travel. 

What Are the Requirements to Apply for TSA PreCheck? 

To be pre-screened for travel via the TSA PreCheck program, you’ll need to complete the application process and answer all the TSA interview questions. Requirements for TSA PreCheck eligibility include: 

#1: Prove Citizenship or Residency Status

The Transportation Security Administration or TSA PreCheck program is available for any U.S. citizen, U.S. national, and U.S. lawful permanent resident. You’ll need to provide specific supporting identification or proof of citizenship or immigration status depending on your country of birth and country of citizenship. 

#2: Provide a Current Legal Name

To help increase your TSA PreCheck eligibility, you must provide a current legal name as well as all past names and aliases used. Your current legal name must be an exact match across: 

  • Your airline reservation name
  • The name on your TSA PreCheck membership application
  • The identification and proof of citizenship/immigration documents provided at enrollment

#3 Select a Gender

You’re required to select a gender from: 

  • Male
  • Female
  • Another gender

However, your gender selection does not have to match the gender on your identification documents or your airline reservations to get a TSA Precheck Status. 

#4: Visit an Enrollment Center to Be Fingerprinted

Once you submit an online application, you’ll need to schedule a visit to a TSA enrollment center to complete the background check and have your fingerprints taken.

#5: Pass a Criminal Background Check 

You must pass recurrent criminal history vetting covering domestic offenses as well as review against international agencies such as Interpol and terrorist watchlists.1

Criminal offenses and travel-relevant violations are split into two categories: 

  1. Permanent disqualification – Your application will be rejected permanently if your record includes violations such as: 
  • Treason, sedition, or espionage
  • Terrorism
  • Use or threat of explosives
  • Transportation security incidents, including transporting hazardous materials
  • Murder
  • Racketeering
  1. Temporary disqualification – There is a long list of crimes (including violent crimes) under the list of interim disqualifying criminal offenses, which generally leads to a wait of seven years before qualifying for the TSA PreCheck lane.

    Additionally, you cannot be approved until clearing any active warrants for your arrest.

#6: Have No Record of Travel-Specific Violations 

There are some actions that may be simple misdemeanors on the ground but are considered especially dangerous in an airborne plane. As a passenger, you’re required to refrain from travel-related crimes and violations to qualify for TSA PreCheck membership, including: 

  • Assault, threat, intimidation, or interference with flight crew2
  • Physical or sexual assault or threat of same against any individual on an aircraft
  • Interference with security operations
  • Access control violations
  • Providing false or fraudulent documents
  • Making a bomb threat
  • Bringing a firearm, explosive, or other prohibited item to an airport or onboard an aircraft

#7: Be Mentally Sound

This is a tricky one; the requirement is actually that you haven’t been legally shown to be mentally ill to the extent of posing a danger or being an adult without legal competence. This can be based on a court, government authority, or medical declaration such as: 

  • Posing a danger to self or others based on mental illness1
  • Lacking the capacity to conduct or manage one’s own affairs
  • Being found not guilty by reason of insanity by a court
  • Not being competent to stand trial in a criminal case 
  • Being involuntarily committed to an inpatient mental health or psychiatric facility 

The Most Important TSA PreCheck Requirement

Meeting all the other requirements doesn’t help if you don’t take action—the most important TSA PreCheck requirement is that you complete the application process for you to enjoy the TSA PreCheck Benefits

That’s where GOV+ comes in. Whether you’re renewing your TSA PreCheck or applying for the first time, GOV+ makes the process easy. All you have to do is fill out our easy online form. We’ll check your eligibility, set up any necessary in-person appointments for you, and make sure you have the correct documentation.


1. TSA. Disqualifying Offenses and Other Factors. https://www.tsa.gov/disqualifying-offenses-factors

2. TSA. TSA PreCheck® FAQ. https://www.tsa.gov/precheck/faq

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