When we hear the term private investigator, we think of Sherlock Holmes. We picture the detective in a long black coat running around town solving mysteries and making local newspaper headlines. But, Sherlock Holmes is not from the real world and his character is a bit exaggerated. So, what exactly does a real-life private investigator do?
Becoming A Private Investigator
Are you interested in becoming a private investigator? Have you looked into private investigator training? The steps it takes to become a private investigator vary by state, but there are generally two constant requirements. The first is taking the required courses and the second is maintaining state licensure.
In becoming a private investigator, the state may require you to obtain a degree, complete a P.I. training course, take self-defense courses, or complete firearm training. All of these are excellent opportunities to sharpen your skills. Typically, private investigator training is comprised of courses regarding the criminal justice system and the skills you will need to work in the field.
The Job Description of A Private Investigator
Private investigators are in many ways, detectives for hire. The main purpose of private investigators is to investigate and uncover the requested information. As a private investigator, you will spend a lot of time meeting with clients and interviewing subjects. You may also do the following four things.
● Researching Necessary Information
● Conducting Surveillance and Observing
● Preparing Documents and Building Cases
● Studying Behavior, Documents, and the Legal System
These actions are a large part of what you would do as a private investigator. It is important to note that private investigators have no legal jurisdiction. As a private investigator, you are not a part of law enforcement. You are a citizen working towards a specific goal. A goal that you are hired and paid to achieve.
How Private Investigators Make Money
Private investigators make money by completing tasks and achieving goals set by the individuals that hire them. A private investigator may be paid to find a missing person, track a cheating spouse, verify information, research cybercrime, or watch for signs of criminal activity.
Most private investigators work for another individual, but some may work for business too. When private investigators take a position working for a business, they often conduct pre-employment screenings. These screenings are then used to narrow down a position’s candidate and select the best fit.
In the United States, private investigators earn an average of $50,000 per year. The top ten percent earn over $90,000 per year. The amount earned as a private investigator is closely tied to education and experience.
Unfortunately, Sherlock Holmes would never make it as a private investigator in the real world. He is too famous. The individuals he followed would recognize him immediately and behave differently. Complete private investigator training courses, pass the state test and maintain licensure then you could be a P.I. for hire.