Investigators specialize in different areas of litigation. Whether running a background check, trying to locate someone, or searching for missing records, it is wise to interview any investigator you are considering and make sure they are a good fit for your project needs. To assist, we have put together five questions to ask before hiring any litigation investigator.
1. Are They Licensed?
The majority of states require private investigators to be licensed in order to practice. This is to ensure that they are properly trained and understand the legal limitations associated with their job, which can vary by state. Mutual trust is an important part of any investigation, and a reliable investigator should have no issue sharing their license information with you. You may also wish to inquire about their insurance coverage, which many professionals carry to prevent any issues or damages from impacting their clients.
2. What is Their Area of Expertise?
It is common for investigators to have a principal area of practice, such as surveillance, finding missing persons, medical claims, etc. In addition to confirming that they are capable, ask investigators how long they have been performing this kind of work. Try to get a sense of how focused their area of expertise is and consider whether it will suit the requirements of your project or not.
3. Can They Ensure Results?
Avoid investigators who claim they can guarantee the results you are looking for. A professional and well-trained investigator should be neutral in the case, with their only objective being to learn the facts on behalf of their client. While the right investigator will have some flexibility to meet the demands of the project, such as their work schedule, specific results are something they cannot promise.
4. How are Updates Delivered?
Investigators need time to perform their work, and occasionally this can take longer than clients expect. Still, they should be able to offer regular updates for the duration of the project and respond to questions that the client has. There is also the manner in which this correspondence is undertaken: by phone, email, or text? Will you be communicating directly with the investigator or someone else like a manager? Understanding how information about your investigation is conveyed can help set expectations so there are no surprises later.
5. Do They Have References Comparable to Your Case?
While a capable investigator will not disclose identifiable information about previous projects, it is worth asking them for details on cases they have worked on that are similar to yours. This can offer insight into how they practice their work and how professional they may be. If they do not feel able to handle your case for any reason, this question can also open up suggestions for a more suitable investigator.
Are you thinking about initiating an investigation? Contact us using the information below and one of our experts will be happy to discuss your needs.