How to Become a Private Investigator in Georgia

To become a Private Investigator in Georgia is different from most other places. The difference is that Georgia does not require much for you to work as a PI for a Private Investigator agency. You simply need to be employed/ registered under a licensed Georgia PI agency as a Private Investigator. You do not even need to take a Private Investigator course/ get Private Investigator training to become a PI employee. As staff of an agency, you will get a Georgia "beginner's" license simply called PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR license. You need a PI employer to get this license. You will need to take a government approved PI course after you obtain this license (within six months). However, you won’t have a full Georgia Private Investigator's license (work for yourself) but you can work as one for an agency. This can be viewed as you being a Private Investigator under supervision. A full PI license allows you to work for yourself (your own business). This requires you to have education. Other than education, to become a Private Investigator in Georgia, you need to meet basic Private Investigator requirements such as age, language proficiency, and other usual requirements of this nature. Furthermore, you will need to take the same government approved PI licensing course (most other places you do). In Georgia, the government body that controls licensed Private Investigators is the Georgia Board of Private Detectives & Security Agencies. Once you submit the proof of your ability to meet the requirements and education to The Board, you will get your full Georgia PI license. A full PI license does not really exist in Georgia. The equivalent to a full PI license in Georgia is operating your own PI agency with a PI business license. Most jurisdictions will have a PI beginner’s license. In Georgia, this license is the PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR license. Getting this beginner's license is when your struggle will begin.

Private Detective Aptitude Test


Your Private Investigator beginner’s license equivalent in Georgia is just being support staff to a Georgia PI agency with the PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR license. This will allow you to work for a Georgia PI agency, but you will not be able to work for yourself (your own PI company). This means you must work under the supervision of a fully licensed Georgia PI agency. However, the term “under supervision” will be in namesake only. You will not be supervised or guided by an experienced Georgia Private Investigator. In fact, PI agencies are not economically structured to have mentor/ student surveillance teams. Furthermore, a background in non-PI investigations will give you some transferable knowledge but it will not set you up to become a successful Private Investigator. New Private Investigators still need to know how to be successful working surveillance operations. This is why practical Private Investigator education and training specifically for Private Investigators is necessary.




Georgia PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR (Beginner) License Requirements

  1. You need to be 18yo or older.

  2. You need to be an American citizen/ legal resident.

  3. You cannot have a history of mental illness.

  4. You must have a clean criminal and personal record.

  5. You will need to take an approved PI course within six months of being licensed. Contact The Board for a list of approved providers.

  6. After getting licensed, you will need 16hrs of continuing PI education every year.


The application will be completed by your Georgia PI employer.




Learn more about Private Investigator Online Training

Private Detective Aptitude Test



More Georgia licensing information.



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This lack of guidance is why so many rookie Georgia Private Investigators burn out and quit and why many experienced Georgia Private Investigators are jaded. On top of this, PI clients with small budgets typically get the new unqualified Private Investigators, nobody wins in this situation. It is also not fair to small PI clients to use their files to haphazardly train new Private Investigators.

Georgia PI

So, the time comes for you to work investigations in Georgia with no Private Investigator experience or education. If you took the PI course/ PI training, it most likely will have focused on legal matters with no real practical Private Investigator training or topics. You will always be told by Georgia employers that “soon you will get some PI training,” which never happens. It took me over five years to figure out the industry and get good at a few specialized fields. During that time, I struggled and probably lost several hundred thousand dollars due to losing work opportunities from a lack of skill and education. What is sad is that this is a common story in the industry. If you make it through this meat grinder of an industry and obtain an educational degree, you be qualified to work for yourself with your own PI agency. Hopefully, when you are hiring new Private Investigators, you will appreciate the importance of proper PI education.



PI Agency Education Requirements


-You need a four year degree in a criminal justice type field.


-You will need to take an approved PI course within six months of becoming a licensed PI agency.


-After getting licensed, you will need 16hrs of continuing PI education every year.


More Georgia PI Agency License information.



Thinking of Becoming a Georgia Private Investigator?


“ICPI Level 100 online Private Investigator Training” is the ultimate blueprint to start your exciting and rewarding career as a real Georgia Private Investigator.


ICPI will help you start successfully in this amazing new career, even if you know nothing about investigations.


Our team has vetted out the best training and investigative methods so that you can jump-start your journey towards having the meaningful career you’ve always wanted, immediately.


This training system will provide you, a successful detective, with all the templates that you need to succeed. A clear path on becoming a PI, understanding the PI business, becoming a successful PI, and thinking like a detective- all the tools you need to make six figures being an investigative Operative.


To date, this online training system consists of over 100 informational slides, videos, exercises and quizzes that provide a step-by-step path on how to achieve your dream job as a Private Investigator.


ICPI Level 100 takes about two weeks to complete with over 30 hours of high-quality training content that will make you a Private Investigator well on your way to becoming an expert in this fascinating career.


Certification


Get a certificate that "actually" matters. When you get certified by Novel Data in the 100 Level course, Georgia Private Investigator agencies will be aware that you understand the PI industry. This will give you a great competitive edge in the PI job market. Most PI applicants know very little about the PI job they are applying to. Not you. A PI hiring manager will not want to risk turnaround by hiring someone unfamiliar with the industry, they will choose an applicant who is familiar with what will be expected of them. With Novel Data's certification, that applicant will be you!

Georgia detective







Become a Great Georgia PI

Yes, you can become a great Georgia Private Investigator. How? Through Private Investigator education. Not through the short Georgia government licensing course, but through at least 100hrs of practical Private Investigator education. This can be online Private Investigator training classes or in an in-class training environment. In order to become a successful Georgia Private Investigator and meet Private Investigator requirements, you need to become educated on the complexities of the private investigation industry (this will also help you decide if you want to pursue the PI career) and how to set yourself up to become a successful Private Investigator. Secondly, you will need to become educated on how to perform investigations.

PI license

To learn the complexities of the Georgia private investigation industry you will need to understand a few Private Investigator industry topics. Regional licensing requirements for Private Investigators will teach you what you need to obtain your Georgia Private Investigator license. To help you decide if you want to enter the career of private investigation you, will have to learn the common misconceptions about the Private Investigation industry. Understanding the learning curve of a Private Investigator will set you up to become a successful PI.


Before entering the Georgia PI industry, it is useful to know the challenges encountered as a Professional Private Investigator. This will also help you make career decisions. Then you need to learn what you will be doing as a Private Investigator. Learning the areas of specialization as a Professional Private Investigator and types of clients and corresponding file requirements will help with this. You will need to learn how Georgia Investigators obtain assignments and hours of work to determine if this work environment is right for you.


If you are concerned about your ability to perform as a Georgia Private Investigator and how to be a Private Investigator that is successful, learning what factors will determine your aptitude as a Professional Private Investigator and what makes a “good” Professional Private Investigator will be essential. It is also important to know the physical and health requirements and health considerations. Then there is equipment. Learning about equipment needed in order to get started in a career as a Professional Private Investigator is a must.


Furthermore, you will need to educate yourself on communication devices and their role in private investigation. Lastly and most importantly, you must learn “The Investigative Mindset.” This will teach you how to think like a Private Investigator. After you learn these concepts, you will be well on your way to becoming a Private Investigator even without experience.


After learning the complexities of the Georgia private investigation industry, you will need to develop practical skills in various areas. The most important areas are Desk Investigations, Pre-surveillance, surveillance, mobile vehicle surveillance, on-foot surveillance, obtaining evidence, and litigious reporting. To learn Desk Investigations, you will need to understand what is a Desk Investigation, Desk Investigation nomenclature, corroborated/ circumstantial evidence, The Evidence Document, The Desk Investigators Mindset, Google Basics for North America, and social media search basics for North America. Surveillance will be the largest subject to learn. Under this field you should learn about setting up a proper surveillance vehicle, surveillance spot checks, and surveillance set ups for various investigative operations.


As a Georgia Private Investigator, you will spend the majority of your time performing investigations solo. This is why learning single person surveillance is crucial. Furthermore, you will occasionally work in surveillance teams, so you will need to learn how to perform surveillance with two or more surveillance operatives. Georgia Private Investigators perform a lot of their surveillance from a surveillance vehicle, but also on foot, you will need to learn this also. The entire reason Georgia Private Investigators are hired, is to obtain evidence. Obviously, learning how to obtain evidence, mostly in video form, is a must. As a Georgia Private Investigator, you will need to obtain quality video that is litigious and that will satisfy your client. At the end of all this, you will need to learn how to create an investigative report that will most likely be used in litigation. After you learn all of this, you will have no trouble becoming a successful Georgia Private Investigator.


It should be apparent now, why and how you can become a Georgia Private Investigator. Yes, the government licensing course is necessary but it will not set you up for success as a Private Investigator. You will always need at least 100hrs of practical Private Investigator education. You will need to learn the PI industry, as well as how to perform. In fact, becoming a Private Investigator through proper education will set you up to become more successful than Investigators with many years of experience but who have not developed a strong foundation with proper Private Investigator education.




What You Need to Learn to Become a successful Georgia PI


-Regional licensing requirements for Georgia Professional Private Investigators


-Common misconceptions about the Private Investigation industry


-The learning curve of a Professional Private investigator


-Personal challenges encountered as a Georgia Professional Private Investigator


-Areas of specialization as a Georgia Professional Private Investigator


-Types of Georgia clients and corresponding file requirements


-How Georgia Investigators obtain assignments and hours of work


-What factors will determine your aptitude as a Professional Private Investigator


-What makes a “good” Professional Private Investigator?


-Physical health requirements and health considerations


-Equipment needed in order to get started in a career as a Professional Private Investigator


-Equipment Map


-Computers, tablets and peripherals


-Common terminology


-NATO – Phonetic Alphabet


-The Investigative Mindset




What You Need to Learn to "Perform" Georgia Investigations


How GA Desk Investigations are performed


Finding missing persons in GA


Finding missing children in GA


Finding GA people who intentionally disappear


Corroborated & circumstantial evidence


What is evidence & how to structure it


The Evidence Document


Google as an investigative tool


Background checks in GA


Searching phone numbers


Reverse name search


Reverse email lookup


Reverse address lookup


Bug sweep (TSCM)


Daily Gear Protocol


Data & evidence security


GA surveillance


Pre-surveillance research


Communication protocols


Clients perspective


Active mobile surveillance two or more investigators


Skill vs, luck and circumstances


Risk vs. reward


Subject identification


Understanding & managing Heat


GA traffic conditions


Driving methods for different GA areas or environments


Filming best practices


Mobile foot surveillance


PI surveillance Gearbag


Required surveillance equipment


Clothing and props


The physics or mechanics of foot surveillance


Covert PI equipment & techniques


On foot following techniques & best practices


Transitioning in and out of buildings


Video framing and quality


GA insurance investigations


Executive protection


Surveillance report writing




The Learning Curve of a Georgia Private Investigator


A novice in any of the Georgia Private Investigator fields or disciplines is an individual who has less than 2400 hours of experience and Private Investigator training. Once Georgia PIs achieve 2400 hours of Private Investigator experience, they will have the confidence and expertise to work independently. When a Georgia Private Investigator acquires over 10,000 hours of experience in a given field, they are considered to be proficient in that particular field or discipline. Due to the many disciplines in the Georgia Private Investigator industry, it would take many years of hard work and effort to master them all. Most PIs choose to specialize in a few fields rather than trying to become experts in all areas.


A novice Georgia Private Investigator, no matter how intelligent, must learn through experience. Private Investigator school is an excellent way to build a solid foundation; however, to become fully capable a novice Georgia PI will need experience. The learning curve is defined by specific skills one can only obtain by working in the professional investigative industry.


An experienced Georgia Private Investigator will have a better ability to predict situations and know what information to look for. A novice Investigator is more likely to experience tunnel vision of thought and action due to stress and other contributing factors. These factors will contribute to the novice missing details that a more experienced investigator would have spotted and leveraged to move the investigation forward.


The experienced Georgia Professional Private Investigator will have seen many typical situations in a particular field and will adapt their methods as they apply knowledge from past experiences.


In the Georgia Private Investigator profession, you will never stop encountering new situations that will act as learning opportunities to increase your knowledge and skills. If you ever arrive at a point in your career when you believe you can do no wrong, be prepared to be reminded that this is a lifelong journey. The Professional Investigator draws from the past, uses that information in real time to make calculated decisions and anticipates things yet to happen. Effective experience-based decisions will benefit the client and shape your reputation as a Georgia Investigator.


At the 10,000-hour mark, a Georgia Private Investigator is considered a master in whatever field they obtained those hours. They will have encountered nearly every situation imaginable in that field and have a vast repository of experiences to work with. When a new situation does occur, the master Investigator will be able to apply the Private Investigator knowledge gained from past experiences to the new situation. Furthermore, the master Investigator will not be susceptible to tunnel vision and will be able to think clearly in new situations, even intense ones.





About the Author

PI license

Peter Sandru is an Instructor & Co-Founder of NDIL with over 14 years as a Professional Private Investigator. Peter has spent more than a decade conducting investigations and security operations throughout the world, primarily for corporations, law firms, and government agencies. Peter has assisted in the creation of numerous investigative & security training programs in various capacities.