Hiring a private investigator is a great way to track a person down, conduct surveillance, and gather useful information. However, finding the right PI for your needs can seem overwhelming at first.

Some private investigators are better suited for specific tasks, and therefore doing your research can ensure that you can find a private investigator with the skills to gather the information that you need. So, let us discover 3 simple steps that can help you to find a PI.

Determine What You Want

Private investigators can locate various types of people and information. Consequently, different types of PIs have unique skills and equipment that can be used in various ways. For example, whereas some private investigators are better at tracking documents down, others are best suited to personal surveillance. Moreover, before you begin to search for a PI you need to first establish the kind of work that you need completing. To elaborate, you might need to ask yourself whether you need to perform a background check on a person or company, or if you need electronic or video surveillance solutions.

Put simply, there are some situations where hiring a PI can help you to find answers and make better decisions. From a business perspective, private investigators can help companies with cases of suspected fraud, theft, espionage, and violations of non-disclosure agreements. With regards to personal relationships, PIs can help people to determine whether a new partner is telling the truth about their background or identity and can confirm or disprove suspicions about a cheating spouse. Additionally, some PIs even assist in child custody cases and criminal defence investigations, so it is important to find a PI that specializes in circumstances similar to your own.

Begin Your Search

Once you have established precisely what you require from a private investigator, you can start to look for names. Firstly, try to get a referral from someone you know that has previously used a PI. Alternatively, you can look through the phone book, or complete an online search for investigators in your area. From there you can check the websites of some of your chosen PIs to learn more about their skills and services. Again, remember to keep exactly what you need from a PI in mind when considering the different options.

With all this in mind, private investigators that specialize in tracking people down usually work from an office, using the internet and telephone to gather information. PIs that are more suited to surveillance tend to offer mobile services to ensure that they are best able to locate and keep an eye on others. Correspondingly, it is important to consider your location at all times. It might seem obvious, but if you need to track someone down that you suspect lives in Denver, then reaching out to private investigators working in the Colorado area is going to be more helpful than trying to contact a PI from a different state.

Always Meet a Potential PI First

Having done your research, now is the time to meet your chosen investigator in person. For your first meeting remember to bring along any relevant information regarding your case. Any relevant documents, photographs, or other general information will enable your PI to do their job properly. For surveillance cases, be sure to provide an image of the person, their address, the location of any significant places of interest, and information about any vehicles. The PI might also inform you about any other information that they might need to work on your case.

When talking to your PI be sure to ask questions about their specialities and experiences. Furthermore, formal education including degrees and professional certifications offered by reputable trade organizations can be positive indicators that this is the person best suited to your case. Throughout your consultation your PI should clarify what you are asking from them and will likely ask you to provide more information to provide the services that you need. Do not be afraid to be honest if there is anything that you do not know or understand at this stage. Above all, most PIs work on an hourly rate so be sure to discuss the estimated cost of your investigation.

Ultimately, before hiring a PI it is crucial that your expectations are clear. There are a number of factors that will influence your decision regarding the best private investigator for your case but try to focus on the peace of mind of discovering the truth regarding your situation, and everything else should fall into place.

Contacting a private investigator alongside your attorney can be useful in child custody cases to ensure that children are safe and that parents are abiding by custody agreements. For more information check out this article that lists 4 times when you should consider contacting a lawyer.

Zoe Kickhefer
zoe@everydaylifes.com