How to Find a Trusted Private Investigator?

Posted In Business Insider, DigitalOlympus News - By Josh Cole On Friday, August 2nd, 2013 With 0 Comments

“Employment of private detectives and investigators is expected to grow 21 percent from 2010 to 2020,” according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This growing demand means that you will probably employ a Private Investigator (PI) in the near future. Knowing how to hire the right PI is bound to become a necessity over the next decade.

Do you know how to employ a Private Investigator? When I first thought of hiring a PI I had an idea of what they were supposed to look like based on movies and TV Shows. I was wrong. In order to hire a reliable private investigator like the one I chose, it’s important to disregard those preconceptions from the get-go and learn what questions to ask.

5 Quick Tips to Help You Find the Right Private Eye

Following the next tips will allow you to make the most informed decision when hiring a private detective and help you avoid headaches down the road. With so many private eye firms out there, hiring the right professional might end up being a daunting task. These 5 recommendations will help you choose a reliable Private Investigator:

1.    Keep it hush-hush. Confidentiality starts with you. You have to do some research before hiring anyone, but don’t go asking your friends, neighbors, or co-workers to recommend a detective. Why? This could affect the investigation (especially when dealing with a cheating spouse). Instead, try to to set-up several interviews with different private eye firms and follow the next tips.

2.    Make sure is Licensed and Bonded. The requirements to be a private investigator vary from state to state, but make sure to ask for a license.  If they claim they don’t need one, you should move one to your next option. It also helps if they understand how the court system works (even if courtroom experience doesn’t seem necessary at first in your case).

3.    Guarantee your own peace of mind. You want a reliable PI, but what does that mean? Well, first make sure they have an adequate insurance; you should also ask for a valid written contract and, even though it might sound silly, make sure they have an office. Most bogus PI firms, particularly online ones, don’t have offices.

4.    Ask for their résumé. When a private investigator has military, intelligence or law enforcement experience is always a plus. When you are looking for a PI, ask about their qualifications, their previous cases, areas of expertise, and whether they have dealt with courtroom cases.

5.    Check the price tag. Across the country, private eye fees vary not only from state to state, they also vary depending on the type of services you select. Ask if they charge a flat fee or if they have an hourly fee. Is there a deposit or retainer required in addition to their regular fee?

When we talked about employee background checks tips, we mentioned something that also applies when hiring a private eye: “You need to hunt for background information.” It may be ironic that you need to investigate a private investigator, but –trust me– it’s worth it. Do you have any other advices you’d like to share? Please feel free to leave your comments below.

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