A private investigator or detective looks for clues relating to a crime or offense through obtaining evidence for court cases or private clients. They conduct interviews, check information, perform surveillance by gathering critical information. Private investigators can also investigate cyber-crimes or a fault in a truck accident. They often work with injury lawyers but can be hired by practically anyone that needs them.
Qualification for becoming a private Investigator
Below are the requirements for aspiring private investigators.
- Have a high school diploma
Before employing someone to work as a private investigator, most employers require a high school diploma or equivalent.
- Have a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice
Applicants having an associate or bachelor’s degree in criminal justice or a related discipline are preferred. Those interested in a private investigator job may be eligible for top positions with a bachelor’s degree.
- Having a military or police background is an added advantage
In most cases, most high-ranking investigators have 20 to 30 years of experience serving in the military or police force under their belt.
- Obtain license
Private investigators must receive formal credentials in most states before they are eligible to work.
Frequently asked questions on private investigators
- Can a private investigator arrest someone?
No private investigators are not allowed by law to apprehend someone. All they can do is keep close tabs on individuals, search through their online database to acquire any incriminating information, evidence, or proof of something.
- Do private investigators carry a badge?
No, private investigators cannot carry any symbol of authority or metal badge. However, they are usually required to have their licenses while on duty. Additionally, all private investigators need to show their license if anyone requires them to do so.
- Is it possible for a private investigator to trespass?
Private investigators are permitted to travel anywhere accessible to the public, but they cannot trespass. They’re not allowed to enter a property, residence, or building unless they receive authorization to do so. They may enter a home if the owner permits them when they are looking for information.
- Are there laws restricting private investigators from wiretapping?
Private investigators can learn a lot by listening in on a conversation, but they must exercise extreme caution when doing so. Because the ability to record audio differs by jurisdiction, private investigators must be familiar with the rules in the state where they are working. Each state has either a one-party or two-party consent.
One party consents entail a private investigator recording a conversation in which they are participating without informing the other party. However, a Two-Party Consent involves both the private investigator and the person they’re speaking with being aware of the recording.
While the private investigator career is promising, aspiring private investigators should expect competition from ex-law enforcement and military officers who retire early and apply for private investigation positions. It’s also worth pointing out that experience, being tech savvy, and having a law enforcement degree might help aspiring private investigators stand out from the competition.