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How to Become a Private Investigator in Quebec

To Become a Private Investigator in Quebec is similar to most other Canadian provinces. You need to meet basic Private Investigator requirements such as age, language proficiency, and other usual requirements of this nature.


Furthermore, to become a Private Investigator in Quebec, you need to take government approved Private Investigator education. However, you can apply for a temporary Quebec PI license while obtaining the government approved education.

Bureau de la sécurité privée

In Quebec, the government body that controls licensed Quebec Private Investigators is the Bureau de la sécurité privée.

So, it is the BSP that will have a list of approved Quebec PI licensing education. This list is available on their website. The BSP accepts PI education if it comes from three approved sources within five years of obtaining it:

  • college course called Initiation aux techniques d’enquête et d’investigation

  • college diploma in police technology

  • bachelor's in security and police studies

Once you submit the proof of your ability to meet the requirements and completion of the licensing education to the BSP, you will get your Quebec PI license. Most jurisdiction will have a PI beginner’s license, Quebec does not. You will get to start out with a full QC Private Investigator license. This is where your struggle will begin.

Quebec Beginner PI License

The process of how to become a PI in many places starts with a beginner's license. Your Private Investigator beginner’s license in Que is just a regular Private Investigator license called agent. It will allow you to work for a Quebec PI agency, but you will not be able to work for yourself (your own PI company). This PI license means you must work under the supervision of a fully licensed Quebec PI agency. However, the term “under supervision” will be in namesake only. You will not be supervised or guided by an experienced QC Private Investigator. In fact, Quebec PI agencies are not economically structured to have mentor/ student surveillance teams. Furthermore, the Quebec PI licensing course 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 operations. This is why practical Private Investigator education and training specifically for Private Investigators is necessary.

Quebec PI license

This lack of guidance is why so many new Quebec Private Investigators burn out and quit and why many experienced Private Investigators are jaded. On top of this, PI clients with small budgets typically get the new unqualified QC 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.

how to be a pi in Quebec

So, the time comes for you to be a Private Investigator and work investigations with no Private Investigator experience or practical education. The Quebec licensing course you took focused on legal matters with no real practical Private Investigator training or topics. You will always be told by QC PI 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 difficult process and get a Quebec Private Investigator business license (agency license), you will be qualified to work for yourself with your own PI agency. Hopefully, when you are hiring new Quebec Private Investigators, you will appreciate the importance of proper PI education.

Quebec Private Investigator License Requirements

  1. You must be 18 or older.

  2. Have a clean criminal record.

  3. Be a Canadian citizen.

  4. Be English or French language proficient.

  5. Take government PI license course.

  6. Submit two passport photos.

  7. Submit documents online/ mail.

  8. Get a guarantor.

  9. Pay fee.


You must be 18yo or older.

Criminal Record

You cannot have a criminal record. The BSP will perform a records check on you via the application.

Canadian Citizen

You need to be a Canadian citizen or be legally allowed to work in Quebec.

English/ French

You must be able to speak and write in English or French.

Government Approved Quebec PI License Course

You will need to complete a license course approved by the BSP:

Passport Photo

You have to provide and submit two passport photos in your QC application.


The documents you submit can be sent to the BSP via mail or online uploading.


You will need to get someone you know personally for over one year to verify your identity. Your guarantor will sign the back of your passport photos and include specific wording:

  • I certify the authenticity of this photo of YOUR NAME


You will have to pay a small licensing fee, around $160 CAD.


1611 Crémazie Boulevard East

Suite 500

Montréal, Québec

H2M 2P2

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About the Author


Peter 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. Thru NDIL, Peter has helped many Quebec residents aspiring to become Private Investigators.


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