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California PI License

Take the California private detective license exam

Do you live in California and want to get a private investigator (PI) license? If so, you must meet some requirements. To get your California private investigator license you have to acquire the corresponding education and get fingerprinted. Afterward, submit an application packet, and so on.

Read about the whole process and get detailed information about obtaining PI certification in this article. Also, this article will reveal information about PI salaries. So, keep reading if you want to get the necessary information.

Private investigators are constantly looking for justice, regardless of the work they do or the areas in which they specialize. Thus, they’re putting together paperwork, exploring crimes, and interviewing witnesses to provide their clients with the information they require. Along the way, they’re establishing a name for being fair, and honest.

PIs can protect citizens here if they are important to the inquiry. However, they can’t protect the possession. PIs who carry a gun should carry at least $1 million in liability insurance ($500,000 for injuries or death and $500,000 for property destruction losses).

Private investigators in California are licensed by the state’s Bureau of Security and Investigative Services (BSIS). If you get your PI certification, you’ll be permitted to work independently. Also, read about Contractor license Classifications in CA.

So, meet the following requirements to obtain your certificate:

Get the demanded education

To become a private detective in CA, you must have the following experience, training, and education:

  • Over three years, 6,000 hours of paid research labor (2,000 hours each year)
  • With an Associate’s degree in criminal justice, law, or police science, 5,000 hours of paid investigative work during a two-and-a-half-year period
  • Investigative work over two years with a bachelor’s degree in law or police science (a total of 4,000 hours of paid work)

*Candidates for a PI license with a gun permit also should take an eight-hour course of “Power to Arrest”  and a gun carry and usage course that should contain 14 hours (eight classroom and six range hours).

Research work as a professional police officer, military police officer, attorney, and repossession business is acceptable. It is acceptable also as an insurance agency or arson investigation unit.

In contrast, a process server, public documents researcher, or debt collector are examples of unacceptable jobs.

Also, PIs in CA can get weapons, batons, and tear gas training from firms. California BSIS approves this stuff.

Fingerprinting process

You have to fill out a Live Scan Fingerprint Registration. For people who are also seeking a weapons permit, there is another Live Scan Fingerprint submitting the form. In this state, you must complete the fingerprint verification at one of the facilities, and there are several of them around the state.

There are around 70 centers in the city of Los Angeles alone, and there are over 35 inside the municipal borders of San Diego. Although the forms are not accessible online, the Attorney General’s list of Live Scan Centers is.

PIs must pay a normal cost of $51 and a fee of $89 if they have a guns certificate. A minor, local fee may be added by certain facilities.BSIS uses fingerprints to conduct criminal background checks. The candidate must keep the receipt and include it in the application packet.

Fill out the application and send it in

Only US citizens or legal residents over the age of 18 are eligible to submit for a private detective license.

Include the following documents  in your packet:

  • Form of application
  • Form of personal identification
  • Certificate of Experience Help
  • Business name approval (if it is relevant)
  • 2″ X 1-1/2″ passport photos
  • Application for a Firearms Permit and qualification for a Firearms Permit (if it is relevant)
  • Receipt from a Live Scan
  • A $50 check or money order ($130 if they require a gun permit)

Take the California private detective license exam and pass it

After, when they approve your request you will get a Psychological Services Industries examination package. The packet will include your handbook and study materials. Besides, a phone number to contact to arrange your examination day, time, and place.

Tests are available at any of the 13 state sites Monday through Saturday. Terminology, laws/regulations, civil/criminal responsibility, evidence management, surveillance, and other subjects are covered in the two-hour multiple-choice test.

They will notify you whether you pass the examination, at which point you must pay the $175 licensing cost to acquire your certification.

Salary information

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average yearly income for private detectives in this state was $68,598 in 2020. Those with an outstanding CV and a few years of experience are the ones who make the most money in this state. The top 10% of earners here earn an average of $106,300 each year.

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