Exam and legal
Owning your own private detective or private investigator business may seem like a distant dream to most people. However, becoming a private investigator may not be as far out of reach as first appears.
At the time of writing,here appears to be no mandatory licensing for private investigators so it would appear to be an ideal time to train to become a private detective and start a private investigator business, perhaps by studying a private investigator home study course.
The Security Industry Authority (SIA) are presently developing an approach to licensing private investigators. After a long consultation process with individuals and representatives from the private investigations sector, the SIA intend to present the home office with a regulatory impact assessment.
It remains to be seen what impact this will have on private investigators and their businesses, but any PI who is already practicing, before legislation is enforced, may be at an advantage.
The SIA’s approach to licensing private investigators will be based upon the requirements set out in the Private Security Industry Act (PSIA) 2001 and will also take into account the findings of their consultation process.
It appears, according to the PSIA that any person involved in any surveillance, inquiries or investigations that are carried out for the purposes of obtaining information about a particular person or about the activities or whereabouts of a particular person; or if you are involved in obtaining information about the circumstances in which, or means by which, property has been lost or damaged, will require an SIA license.
However, according to the PSIA, activities exclusively for the purposes of market research or concerned with credit checks will not require a license, as won’t professional activities of practising solicitors, barristers, accountants, journalists and broadcasters.
Also, activities exclusively relating to reference to registers which are open to the public, registers or records to which a person has a right of access and published works and also activities carried out with the knowledge or consent of the subject of the investigation, will not require a license.
But it does seem that any person involved in providing contracted private investigation services will require a licence. This includes: managers, employees, employers, supervisors and directors or partners of private investigation businesses or companies.
It seems a good time to get into the private detective business as anyone already practicing as a private investigator may have a head start over those wishing to become a private investigator or become a private detective, after the licensing legislation comes into effect.