The real question is how can a Private Investigator NOT help your case.


Private Investigator(s) are often hired by attorneys or a spouse for family law cases such as divorce, custody hearings, asset searches and even parenting time for surveillance. They almost always find SOMETHING to help a case. Some people like using a professional investigator. Still others can’t get past that gum shoe stereotype from the 70’s and 80’s like Rockford Files, Magnum P.I. and Simon & Simon. Without getting into a whole separate discussion (especially with the 20-30 crowd that doesn’t know these references) things have changed a lot in the P.I. world. Most are now previous Military, Law Enforcement, Insurance adjusters and the like. Gone are the days of a P.I. picking locks, breaking laws and just sort of winging it and waiting to discover something. There is a lot more training and data sources to utilize now in addition to instinct.

Today some law firms even have a Professional Investigator on staff. Many just keep them in a Rolodex,  on speed-dial or the contacts on their phone – depending on the generation. There are also discussions on who exactly should hire the P.I. so as to protect “Privileged” information and “Work Product” for court purposes. This should be debated with an attorney. As for Why a P.I., that question I will answer here.


  • LEGALITIES – They can work for or against you

In my years as a Police Officer and as a Private Investigator almost everything comes down to evidence. A private investigator can do things legally that would be against the law for you. In fact they may even land you in jail. As an example if you try and follow your spouse or your ex-spouse around town and you are caught you could end up in jail with stalking charges. Whereas a P.I. can follow them all day long and it’s legal. It doesn’t also doesn’t hurt that we most likely won’t get caught. In addition, there are other laws pertaining to evidence collection, stalking, trespassing, etc. that the average person would likely violate.




  • EVIDENCE – You need it and a P.I. finds it

There are so many ways evidence can help you. I once won a case for a client simply based on diapers in the trash. I also uncovered assets hidden from a spouse that gave her $250,000 more in the divorce. It’s a long story and this blog doesn’t have time, but it’s true. Below I present a partial list of valuable evidence a P.I. can find for you:

-Records of Assets

-Criminal history

-Driving history

-Locate bank accounts

-Locate property

-Locate people with little or no information

-Locate phone numbers

-Locate owners of phone numbers

-Photos of spouse cheating

-Information on criminal history and personal information of “other person”

-Photos/Videos of spouse neglecting or abusing children

-Uncover documents, damning photos, plans, past due bills, etc. from trash

-Uncover narcotics paraphernalia, proof of alcohol, etc. from trash



  • KNOWLEDGE – Where to look, When and Why.

A comedian once said to a heckler, “Why did you come here and shout at me like that? I didn’t come to McDonald’s and tell you how to flip burgers, did I”. Same holds true here. I have had many highly intelligent people that thought they knew better how to do this job and in the end they were proven wrong. WHY? Simple. EXPERIENCE!

In short a P.I. has the experience, training and has developed a gut sense of what seems wrong or right in any given case. This experience is only honed after years of doing the job, studying, reading, seeking advice from other P.I.’s, doing the job and trial and error. Sometimes we can’t even pinpoint why we know something, we just do. It is felt. Just yesterday I was able to prove for a client that a con-artist woman was living at a house so she can be served at some point. My own client doubted me and was emphatic that she was somewhere else. He even tried to pull the plug on me and asked for the retainer back. I convinced him to give me one more day and sure enough she came out of the house at 1030 am and I was able to show him proof. Sure our clients have expertise, but it lies in other fields like law, research, surgery, investing, mechanics or even plumbing. That is why you hire a professional (P.I.) investigator though.


  • GUTS! – The grit and fortitude in the face a fear.

Let’s face it readers, you’re not all cut out for this job. I have been in the military, in law enforcement and a professional investigator for over two decades, actually going on three. I am not easily rattled by people that are upset, people that may want to assault me or people that are a bit crazy. Scary places, doing scary things and unstable situations don’t make me fearful at all. So simply talking to strangers, sometimes making up stories on the fly or maybe even doing a bit of acting on occasion to get information doesn’t faze me either. In fact it can be exciting sometimes. Whereas the average person with the average job (non-military/non law Enforcement) would likely freak out, cower down, curl up in a ball or just take off running. Like Jack Nicholson said in A Few Good Men, “You need me on that wall”.  This is not a macho ego boost type thing it is simply fact. In many cases had I not had all my experience and training I may not have been able to get the photo I needed or the evidence I needed or whatever. It just is.


Hope this helps give you some insight. Call us if we can help.



Paladin Investigations & Protection