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How Do You Get a Private Investigator License?

Applying for a private investigator license in the UK is fairly straightforward. Unless you don't meet one of the few qualification criteria. You should be able to get your license without much incident.

Getting a license can change your private investigation practice in many ways. You'll be able to operate with more authenticity and you'll look more professional when you're introduced to new clients.

Requirements For Qualifying For A Private Investigator's License

In the UK, it's not necessary to have a private investigator's license for you to operate as a private investigator. However, a license will separate your practice from the rest that aren't always viewed in a positive light.

To get a license, you'll need to:

  • Be at least 18-years old
  • Have attained an IQ Level 3 Award for Professional Investigators
  • Have the legal right to work within the UK
  • Pass tests that state you're a fit and proper person
  • Pay the licensing fee (currently £220)

The Process Of Applying For A Private Investigator's License

Applications for private investigator licenses are made to the Security Industry Authority (SIA) in the UK.

The process of applying for an SIA license is outlined as follows:

  • Step 1: Register a personal account with the SIA on their website. An email confirmation will be sent to your email.
  • Step 2: Log into the account in the self-service website and provide the requested details
  • Step 3: Start a new application on the website and submit it. You will need a record of your qualifications.
  • Step 4: You'll be notified through your account and you'll also receive an email that will let you know what steps you'll need to take next. This usually involves checking and sending of identification documents and photographs and also paying for the application. You'll need to visit a post office.
  • Step 5: Various checks will be conducted to figure out if you have past criminal activities and if you have the right to work in the UK. Additional documents might be requested at this stage.
  • Step 6: You'll be notified of the decision by the SIA and your license card will come within 14 days of receiving this. In case the SIA intends on refusing your application, they will write a letter letting you know why and you'll have 21 days to offer a response.

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