What Is The Cost of Private Investigators?

Life rarely goes the way we expect it to. While this often manifests itself as small bumps in the road, sometimes these unexpected events can be more life-altering. This can result in seemingly never-ending questions and a desire to gather the facts. That’s where private investigators can come in. Armed with the task of uncovering the truth and providing you with legally obtained information and evidence, a private investigator can offer answers to your questions and ensure you get closure.

A private investigator is truly a profession that requires a number of skills, including discretion, intelligence, honesty, hard work, patience, and reliability. Collecting the data and evidence you need can be painstaking work and take a great deal of time and effort. Therefore, it only makes sense that they are fairly compensated for their work. As a client, you may be wondering how much a private investigator costs. While you want to hire someone who is worth their price, you also don’t want to break the bank. So let’s take a look at what hiring a private investigator may cost.


Determine The Rates

During your first consultation with your private investigator (which is often free of charge), you will have the opportunity to ask questions regarding payments. In Canada, there isn’t actually an industry standard dictating how much private investigators are allowed to charge; rather, new firms tend to reference existing ones to ensure their pricing is competitive. Therefore, it’s important to have an open and honest conversation about how you will be billed. Private investigator firms will often use their years of experience to inform the price’s baseline, but the amount of time required to complete the job will also play a major factor.

For the most part, private investigators tend to charge by the hour. Fees can range anywhere from $75 to $150, but expecting to start around the $100 mark is a safe bet. You may encounter the occasional flat rate for a particular service, such as having them conduct a background check, but an hourly rate is to be overall expected.


Ask About Expenses

It’s also important to ask whether the quote you are given includes any additional expenses, such as travel time, hotel fees, and other administrative costs. While some private investigation firms may choose to include this in their original quote, thus allowing you to better budget what you will be spending, others do not. If this is the case, ensure that you ask how much these additional expenses may cost you, whether there’s a cap, and how you will be billed.

Depending on the type of case you’re asking them to take, these fees can add up quickly, thus catching you off guard when you receive the bill. Reputable private investigation firms will strive to be as upfront and honest about the billing process as possible to ensure that they are not adding additional stress to your plate.

Shop Around

When it comes time to hire a private investigator, don’t be afraid to shop around and explore your options. Particularly in larger cities, there’s certain to be a few options available, so speak to a handful until you’re confident you’ve found the right fit for your case.

Additionally, don’t forget to measure cost against quality. While option A may offer their services on the lower end, it may be because they’re cutting corners and looking for a quick resolution. Option B, meanwhile, may be more pricey, but they may also offer the peace of mind that you’re looking for. The firm you select will be diving into your personal life, so ensure it’s one you feel comfortable with and trust.


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