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How Do I Get My Private Investigator License?

Getting your private investigator license can be a major boost for your career in private investigation. There are clients who may not wish to work with someone who is unlicensed. Therefore, a PI license may open up your practice to a whole new market. However, there is more required to get a private investigator license than just submitting an application form. Unless you meet the criteria, you may not be able to get your license.


Licensing And The Sia

The SIA cannot fail to come up when you're thinking about getting your private investigator license. The Security Industry Authority is the body that is in charge of issuing licenses to anyone working within the security industry and private investigators are no exception.

Although the licensing isn't required compared to other roles in the security industry, the SIA is still the body that handles this. The SIA are also the ones who'll go through your application to see whether you meet the requirements or not. If your application for a private investigator's license is turned down by the SIA, there is room to appeal the decision.


Private Investigator Courses That Lead To Licensing

Not every private investigator course that's offered in the UK will lead to a license. Taking the right course is an important step in getting your private investigator's license. Therefore, you'll need to factor this in when you're searching for a suitable training school.

Private investigator courses are what will give you the skills you need to work as a private investigator. Therefore, only institutions that have been verified to be offering the correct kind of training can offer courses that lead to licensing. This includes the Association of British Investigators (ABI) Academy. You need to take a course that will lead to attaining an IQ Level 3 Award for Professional Investigators or similar.

The cost of taking these courses will vary depending on the institution you go to. However, you can expect to pay anywhere from a few hundred to a thousand pounds. Studying can be done on a full-time or part-time basis. You'll have to take at least 39 hours of guided learning to be able to take the qualification exam.


Additional Licensing Requirements

Meeting the right training requirements is important if you wish to get your private investigator's license from the SIA. However, these are not the only requirements.

When you apply for the license, you'll need to:

  • Be aged 18 years or older
  • Have a right to work in the United Kingdom even if you're not a citizen
  • Pay a £200 licensing fee
  • Pass tests that demonstrate you're fit for the role
  • Pass a background check