How to Become a Private Investigator in Victoria Australia
To become a licensed Private Investigator in Victoria does not require investigative experience. The state police of Victoria will issue you a Vic Private Investigator license if you meet the basic requirements and take a government approved licensing course. This course will not focus on surveillance, but mostly what laws and regulations you need to be aware of. When you get your Victoria PI license, you'll need to know how to perform investigations fit for Private Investigations, such as single person surveillance for insurance fraud cases. After learning how to perform investigations, you can simply work as a Private Investigator in Victoria, but only for a Vic PI agency. You need a PI business license to work for yourself. It is recommended that you first learn how to perform investigations relevant to the PI industry, such as surveillance for insurance fraud files. The fact that Victoria does not have experience or surveillance education requirements does not mean that the quality of investigations is less in Victoria than in other Australian states. In fact, due to poor state industry standards, having a PI license in general does not make you a qualified Investigator regardless of experience or education requirements. The poor industry standard come from the non-relevant experience most, if not all, states require of you to become a licensed Private Investigator. This non-relevant experience can be education degrees and non-PI investigative experience.
Victoria Police Private Investigator License Requirements
In Victoria, you will apply for a Private Security Individual License. This license can qualify you for multiple fields, including Private Investigator. You will have to apply for a Private Security Individual License with the qualification: Private Investigator.
You must be 18yo or older.
You need a clean criminal and personal record.
You must be an Australian citizen
You need to complete the government approved course: Cert 3 Private Investigator.
Licensing and Regulation Division GPO Box 2807, Melbourne, VIC 3001
An industry standard flaw most states have is regulations regarding law enforcement experience. Most states allow you to obtain a PI license if you have law enforcement experience. Some states also accept non-PI investigative experience to obtain a PI license. The problem with states requiring previous investigative experience is that there is no such thing as equivalent Private Investigator experience. Sure, a career in law enforcement will gain you some transferable skills to bring to the PI world. However, an investigative career outside of PI work will not provide you the skill-set to perform what we do the most: single person surveillance for insurance fraud investigations. Furthermore, PIs typically obtain all evidence via quality and litigious video. This is uncommon for most other investigative careers. Being a police officer will not make you a good PI the same way being a PI will not make you a good police officer.
Some states also require you to take an approved PI licensing course, such as Vic. However, these courses/ tests typically focus on what laws you need to be aware of. This is of course useful, but new Private Investigators still need to learn how to perform surveillance investigations. The required tests/ courses do not focus on what we do most: single person mobile surveillance. Often, these tests/ courses do not not even mention single person mobile surveillance. If you are becoming a PI, you need at least 100 hours of surveillance experience to be able to perform safely and meet client's high standards.
Another requirement issue is the acceptance of post-secondary degrees. These degrees that are accepted for PI licensing are typically in the criminal justice field. However, some states accept any post-secondary degree. The issue is, having an educational degree will offer almost no help to you in the Private Investigation industry.
Novel Data Investigative Learning offers the only Private Investigator education courses that focuses on mobile surveillance and understanding the PI industry. For more information on PI education, click here.
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