Not just anyone can put up a shingle and claim to be a private investigator in the state of Florida. Private Investigators are deemed credible people with serious responsibilities by the state of Florida and they must be licensed by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Licensing. Otherwise they could be prosecuted as criminals, if they act as professional private investigators anywhere in the state.
In most cases to become a private investigator to pass the license test a candidate will need to have taken a college course or a state licensing class. Also, often firearms licenses are needed so state certified firearms classes must be taken and a test must be taken and passed for that as well. Take a look at many of the duties that private investigators perform in the course of their work, and you’ll see why Florida takes Private Investigation Certifications and Requirements so seriously:
- Work with law enforcement agencies: Private investigators can have investigations cross investigations with police or other law enforcement officials. In these cases, though working for a private citizen or firm, a private investigator can “compare notes” with an agency official in an effort to help the law enforcement official solve their case or whatever they are working on.
- Work with attorneys: Attorneys frequently hire private investigators to perform a number of tasks, from running background checks to literally investigating people or organizations an attorney may be building a case for or against.
- Work with private citizens: Many people hire private investigators for many reasons. Some of the most common include to track down lost friends and relatives a person has lost touch with over the years, or to help a person ascertain whether or not their partner is cheating on them.
- In some cases, be licensed for and carry firearms: Unfortunately some tasks that a private investigator performs can be risky or dangerous, and therefore they must be licensed to carry and potentially use a firearm.
- Conduct background searches on people and organizations: Companies and people hiring individuals often want to check a potential employee or contractor’s history before paying them good money and bringing them into their lives or businesses.
- Conduct character investigations and give character references: Again, attorneys, private citizens and companies may hire a private investigator to research a particular person’s character before hiring them or before calling on them as a witness in court.
- Investigate the credibility or potential witnesses: This can be crucial when it comes to testimony being affective in a court case. The witness must be credible.· Investigate missing person’s cases: Sadly the law enforcement system only has so much time, money and manpower, and after a time the hard search for a missing person may die down. That doesn’t mean that family or friends are ready to give up, though.
- Investigate crimes such as theft and shoplifting: Loss prevention and control is a frequent task for private detectives, who know what to look for and how to catch thieves and prevent loss before it happens.