Things A Private Investigator Can And Can’t Do

So many people watch private detective shows on television and think this is the way things work in the real world. Trust us when we say that the Hollywood version of private investigation is simply that – Hollywood!

Here on Planet Earth, the work of a private investigator is in no way filled with daily car chases and shootouts in dark alleyways. In reality, it’s a lot of tedious work that will later bear fruit for their clients.


Job of a private investigator

And that’s really what the job is all about! Satisfying the firm’s clients to the best of one’s ability. Our private investigator Jackson MS group is always happy every time they finish a case with great success after the hard work they perform.

There are many things you see on television that a private investigator simply can’t do. And granted some things that are definitely realistic and commonplace in the industry.

Let’s begin with the job of a private investigator and some of the things that private investigators can legally do in most, if not all, states in America. Then we’ll touch on some of the things that are prohibited.

What Can Private Investigators Do

What Can We Do? Well Quite A Bit Actually.

Things you need to know

While there are many things you need to know before hiring a private investigator and things an investigator can’t do within the constraints of the law, there’s still plenty that can be accomplished by following the rules. And any good investigator should follow the rules at all times.

Gathering information, surveilling a person of interest, monitoring someone’s movements, both online and offline, and doing deep dives on the Internet all all things that are legal and give investigators a lot of options for getting the job done in the legal and proper way.

The takeaway here is that private investigators have to follow all local, state and federal laws while going about their business. And there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be able to get the job done while doing so.

Our ACES private investigator Mississippi team has been doing it for decades, and effectively so.

Things Private Investigators Can’t Do 

So What Can’t We Do? Let’s Explore…

Things that a private investigator can do
We Can’t Arrest Someone

Even if a private investigator personally witnesses someone committing a crime, they don’t have arrest powers in most states and jurisdictions. There is the option of making a citizen’s arrest in many areas, but this isn’t a good choice if you’re working as a private investigator. In most cases, it’s best to simply make an anonymous call to the local police department and let them deal with the situation.

no badge


We Can’t Carry A Badge

A private investigator is not a law enforcement enforcement officer and cannot impersonate one. They can carry a copy of their license and flash it to an interested party, but in no way should they imply that they are an officer of the law. Law enforcement agencies take this very seriously and a private detective can get in serious trouble, and burn a lot of bridges, if they don’t comply with this simple rule.

No trespassing private property
We Can’t Trespass On Private Property

Private investigators can go anywhere they want on public property, but they can’t trespass on someone’s personal and private property. They cannot enter homes or buildings without permission and they can’t hide in the bushes outside someone’s home taking photographs. Now if they can take those photos from the sidewalk or street, that’s perfectly legal and acceptable in most cases.

No hacking
We Can’t Wiretap Someone’s Phone

 Wiretapping someone’s phone is against the law, but you can record someone’s conversation in some states and jurisdictions. The catch is that either one or both parties need to be aware that the conversation is being recorded, depending on the laws of the area where you’re doing business. But you can always take photographs of the person talking on the phone, which may or may not do you any good from an evidence gathering perspective.

no oline account hackings
We Can’t Hack Into Someone’s Online Accounts

Private investigators can friend and follow someone online, but they can’t illegally hack into someone’s social media account in order to gather information. They also can’t hack into email accounts, cell phones, personal computers or bank accounts. All rules and laws must be followed when gathering information on a subject or working on behalf of a client.

Call Now ButtonCall Now