Private Investigation

How to Hire a Private Investigator

Just like any other industry the Private Investigator industry has both brilliant and bad apples.  Private investigators have to gain the trust of clients with hard work and integrity.  However when you are desperate how do you determine whether the investigator that you choose will be one of the good ones?

These tips will help you navigate through the sales speak and find a private investigator that works for you.  None of this is set in stone but it may help you find the right person for the job, here are some tips on how to hire a private investigator.  Here is a video showing you what to expect.

  1. If a private investigator is going to be a crucial part of your case then look at this the same way you would when it comes to hiring an employee. Ask for references, get a nondisclosure agreement, check references and do your due diligence.  Any firm should be able to offer you a list of former clients that can share their experience.
  2. Verify any license or credentials. This is the same as checking references, anyone can claim to be an investigator but it doesn’t mean that they are.  In some states like California you can check and see if there were any complaints filed along with the licensing information.
  3. Ask for professional background information, many investigators come from law enforcement and this can work in your favor.
  4. Dig deep. Ask for information about the private investigator’s background. A PI with a significant law enforcement background can benefit you and your case in many ways.
  5. Be wary of the sales pitch. Private investigators cannot in most cases provide definitive results, this isn’t like buying a shirt where you exchange money for something tangible.  Investigations generally take time and patience.  If they dangle promises of guaranteed results in front of you, you need to keep looking.
  6. Trust yourself and your instincts. If this doesn’t feel like the right person to handle your case then look for the person who is.
  7. Verify that your investigator is insured and ask to see a copy of a current policy, check the limits and will the policy cover everything involved in your investigation.
  8. Understand that there are limits to what a private investigator is capable of doing. If your investigation will expand can this particular investigator handle any additional tasks?

Hiring an investigator can feel a bit surreal, but you still need to get the right person for the job.  Don’t hesitate to ask questions and do a little digging to get the right person.

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