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What Is a Private Investigator License?

In the UK, the private investigation industry is gaining importance at a rapid pace. The skills offered by those who work in this profession are proving to be more relevant with each passing day. However, the issue of private investigator licensing is still a serious cause for concern both to those within and those outside the industry.

Licensing of private investigators is still optional in the UK at the moment. This means that there are both unlicensed and licensed private investigators prowling on the streets of the UK. However, the public is starting to recognize the importance of working with licensed investigators and everyone else should do the same.


Where Do Private Investigator Licenses Come From?

In the UK, you can only get a private investigator license from the Security Industry Authority. This is the body that provides licenses for all who work in the industry of private security services.

The SIA has been the only private detective licensing body in the UK since the passing of the private security industry Act in 2001. When a private detective has completed their training, they can make an application to the SIA for a private investigator license. This government body will look through their application and determine if they're a suitable candidate to hold a private detective license in the UK.


What Are The Benefits Of An Sia Private Investigator License?

Being a licensed private investigator has a wide range of advantages.

If you're carrying a private investigator license:

  • You look more professional in the eyes of the client
  • Certain entities may find it easier to let you go through their files/documents during an investigation.
  • You'll be able to join professional associations that only allow license carrying members
  • It may be easier for you to build a reputable brand in the field of private investigation etc.

What Does A Private Detective License Represent?

To the public or potential clients of your private detective agency, having an official private investigator license shows that:

  • You have undergone the requisite training to become a licensed private investigator
  • Your agency is accountable to an entity that is bigger than itself
  • Your agency operates within the boundaries of certain legal and ethical issues
  • You're committed to building a positive image for yourself and your agency
  • You have been vetted by a government body and found to be worthy of carrying a private investigator license


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