Before hiring an investigator, follow this checklist to ensure you hire an investigator with the quality and skill set you are seeking.

 

  1. Is the investigator licensed?

    You can research this through either state or national private investigator professional agencies.


  2. Do you have friends or business associates who can give you word-of-mouth referrals?

  3. Many times, business associates can recommend someone with whom they’ve had a positive experience.


  4. Can you find the investigator in the yellow pages of your telephone directory or on the Internet?

  5. Most reputable investigators will have a Web presence or a telephone listing in the local telephone directory.


  6. Have you asked your insurance company for referrals?

  7. Insurance companies can be a valuable resource and often can recommend reputable investigators.


  8. Before talking with a prospective investigator, be sure you have created a list of questions:

    1. Is the investigator licensed and bonded?

    2. Has the investigator performed work similar to what you need? Is he or she thoroughly experienced in that particular field?

    3. What was the outcome of that work? Did the investigator supply the accurate information that brought the investigation to a successful conclusion?

    4. Does the investigator supply the client with a detailed report?

    5. What does the investigator expect as far as payment? Many investigators expect a retainer  fee in advance and will expect reimbursement for their expenses.

  9. After talking to a prospective investigator, assess whether or not you feel the investigator will communicate well and often with you.