The Role Of Private Investigators In Personal Injury Cases

Every year, there are millions of personal injury cases filed in the United States, with the majority resulting from automobile accidents. A personal injury is one that occurs to the person’s body and not their property. A claim must be filed in order for the person who is injured to obtain compensation for the medical bills and pain and suffering they incur due to the injuries they received. Before the person can file a personal injury claim, the accident must first be determined to have been the fault of the other person. If the person at fault is not obvious, a private investigator agency may be hired to investigate the accident and determine who was responsible for causing the accident.

 

What an Investigation Might Reveal

When a private investigator agency is hired to determine the person at fault for the accident, the result may be much different than the initial belief of the victim. Sometimes vehicles malfunction or the laws may be different than the individual believes. The victim who is filing the personal injury claim is not the only one who may hire a private investigator to find the truth. The Private Investigator In Phoenix Azplaintiff, insurance company, or one of the lawyers associated with the personal injury case are just some of the people who may hire a private investigator agency to investigate the accident or the people involved in the case.

Big Stakes Personal Injury Cases

Most cases where there is little money involved are not pursued as aggressively. However, significant injuries that require extensive medical treatments and/or surgeries, time off from work with loss of income, or which also result in severe emotional damage often leave the victim in a severe financial bind. In addition to losing their finances, they may also experience a serious decline in their quality of life. The medical bills for their treatment far exceed any resource they have to pay them and they may feel that their personal injury claim is the only hope that they have. Getting the facts and proving that they are truly the victim in the case can be extremely important.

In addition to hiring a private investigator agency to prove fault in the accident, the plaintiff may also hire a PI to investigate the legitimacy of the injuries. Surveillance of the “injured” victim may disprove that their claim of serious injury from the accident while an investigation of the person’s medical history may show that the injury existed prior to the accident.

The Importance of Personal Injury Claims

The legal right to file a personal injury claim is important since insurance companies are not likely to pay accident victims for their injuries unless they are held accountable by law. It is also important to ensure that a claim is legitimate and that the person being blamed for the accident is truly the one at fault. Hiring a qualified, experienced private investigator agency is the best way to get to the truth of the matter and get a resolution that is right and fair for every person involved.

Reasons For Hiring A Private Investigator Instead Of Conducting Your Own Investigation

Hiring a private PI seems like something out of the movies for a lot people. If they want to obtain information about another person, they assume they can do it themselves. What many people fail to realize is that hiring a private investigator can prevent you from having run-ins with the law, placing yourself in dangerous situations, and failing to get the accurate information that you really need.

 

The Law

Investigators undergo vigorous tests in most states in order to obtain their license. When they are working for a client, they are required to be forthright with the information they obtain on the client’s behalf. In addition, they must keep the client informed when the investigation is headed in the wrong direction. While understanding their obligations under the law and following them is important to the investigator, it is also important to the individual. There are also laws that will apply to you that do not apply to the investigator, putting you at risk of breaking the law without realizing it. You stand the risk of facing fines and even jail time.

Experience

The average individual has no knowledge about how to perform surveillance or do background checks. Making a mistake at any stage of the process could result in a failure that will bring the investigation to a halt. It could also make the difference in the amount of work and the time required when you do get a private investigator for the job.

Testimony

Depending on the type of case you hire the investigator for and the outcome of the investigation, it could end up in the courtroom. If you take the stand on your own behalf, the issue of believability comes into question. An experienced private investigator, on the other hand, knows how to appear knowledgeable and provide an air of honesty that will bode well in a court of law.

Danger

An investigation is performed to obtain information. You never know when someone is going to be desperate to protect that information. The average individual can interject themselves into dangerous situations without realizing it. PIs, however, are used to handling themselves in situations where there is danger and even those situations where they are openly confronted. There are also those individuals who become irate when they realize they are under investigation, regardless of their guilt or involvement in the issue being investigated. Being discovered could lead to retaliation.

Ability

No individual has the same investigative skills as a professional private investigator. In addition, they are able to conduct an investigation with anonymity that you will not be likely to match. If you attempt to investigate someone, you have a much greater risk of discovery. By representing you, a private investigator can put an individual under surveillance, gain entry into businesses and gather information without the person of interest realizing you are having them investigated. Anonymity is beneficial in investigations of all kinds including those that are professional and personal.

The Confidential Way To Catch A Cheating Spouse

The emotional impact that finding out your spouse is cheating can have on you is just one aspect to the situation that you have to deal with. There is also the impact that it has on your children and on your finances. In fact, every facet of your life can be affected by your spouse’s infidelity.

If you suspect that your spouse is being unfaithful but don’t know how to go about getting the proof you need, a private investigator offers a number of advantages that make it easier to get the answer you need to help you decide where your relationship goes from here. If you are worried that accusing your spouse unjustly could cause problems as well, the confidentiality of a private investigator will allow you to learn the truth without your spouse realizing you were ever suspicious.

The Pain of Not Knowing

Some people don’t want to address the issue of whether their spouse is being unfaithful because they really just don’t want to know. They may ignore the signs in the hopes that they are wrong and hope that the situation will resolve itself so that they won’t have to take any action. The problem with this approach is that not knowing will eat away at you and your relationship even if Private Investigator Phoenix Azyou never find out the truth. Hiring a private investigator to find out the truth will let you know once and for all whether your concerns were founded and how you want to deal with the situation.

Tools Available to Private Investigators Today

Social media, internet, GPS and cell phones have provided convenient tools to the modern investigative team that can give them answers about where your spouse is and who they are spending time with. Calls made using a separate SIM card can be intercepted so you can learn who they are in contact with and what type of conversations they are having. The PI can give you access to your spouse’s emails and messages and let you listen to their phone calls by bugging their Smartphone.

Reasons for Hiring a Private Investigator

There are numerous reasons for hiring a private investigator to find out if your spouse is cheating but the best one is because a PI is better at getting results. They also have the licenses needed to perform surveillance and obtain the information that will provide you with the answers you need. Not only can a professional PI gather information confidentially, they can do so legally when you cannot.

The investigator’s expertise also extends to the conditions of divorce that can make an impact on how you come out should you decide to end your marriage. Having a professional private investigator on your side will improve your odds of coming out of the marriage with the best possible resolution for yourself and your children. Most relationships do not survive infidelity. Regardless of the actions you decide to take as the result of your investigation, you want to have absolute answers on which to base your decision.

The Importance Of Hiring An Ethical Private Investigator Agency

There are a number of reasons that people hire a private investigator agency including everything from checking out a childcare applicant to catching a cheating spouse. While the roles of PIs in the movies have always been surrounded by a certain degree of shadiness that people take to be true in real life, finding an investigator who is ethical and will not break the law to solve your case is to your advantage. Regardless of the type of services you require, you want an investigative agency that will never put you in harm’s way and who will provide you with any information they obtain on your behalf.

 

Attorneys as Clients

Attorneys and law firms will often use the services of a private investigator to obtain information that will be used in their clients’ cases. They may hire them to do background checks, do surveillance on the plaintiff in a personal injury case, or to obtain sensitive information. Without the ethics to abide by the laws of the state and the guidelines of their license, the investigator will Private Investigator Agencynot have the needed credibility to perform these and other important functions for the attorney’s clients who are relying on them for a good defense.

Finding Missing People

Sometimes people disappear because they are victims of foul play. Others disappear to avoid being prosecuted for a crime or to avoid being imprisoned after they have already been found guilty of a crime and sentenced. Sometimes a lawyer may be unable to find an important witness to a crime or accident. The attorney may call on a private investigator agency to find the people that they need for their court case. Private individuals will also hire PIs to find loved ones who they are unable to find on their own. Not only does the person or law firm who hires the attorney rely on them to get results, but they rely on their ethics to provide them with any information they have obtained and information that may indicate they are headed in the wrong direction with their search.

Finding an Ethical, Skilled Professional Investigator Agency

When results matter enough for you to hire a professional, your choice in an ethical investigator agency matters, too. A good place to start is by looking at whether the investigator is licensed in your state. The Bureau of Security and Investigative Services is the licensing bureau which gives the PI their credentials. Check to see if any complaints have been filed against the investigator or the agency prior to hiring them.

Ask them Outright

In your initial meeting, ask the investigators how they feel about their ethical responsibilities and the role they play in their work. Any private investigator agency that is concerned with being ethical and having integrity in the services they provide will tell you in their response. You can also ask them for references and follow up on them to ensure they have followed ethical investigative practices in the past. You want a private investigator agency that solves cases and that does so in a way that generates trust and respect from their clients.

Private Investigators: What They Cannot Do

If a person watches enough TV or reads enough PI novels, they may come away thinking that private investigators can do anything, anywhere, at any time. This is simply not true. Private investigators have rules that they have to obey and disobeying those rules can cost them their license (or worse). Here are some of the things that private investigators cannot do and clients should not ask them to do:

Note: State laws vary; the following are general to most states in the U.S. International laws may vary wildly from country to country.

No U.S. state allows private investigators to represent themselves as the police or other law enforcement officers. This means that they are not allowed to dress in police uniforms or carry badges that suggest that they are local, state, or federal police officers.

Private investigators are not allowed to make arrests other than those arrests that the average citizen can make. Generally, private investigators will leave the arrest part of the operation to the local police as this is almost always the best way to ensure that the offender does not have grounds for dismissal later on in court.

Private investigators are not allowed to tap phones without prior consent. Federal law prohibits both the police and private Phoenix Private Investigatorsinvestigators from tapping phones or even monitoring calls with court approval or consent from at least one of the concerned individuals. Note: In the U.S. 38 states and the District of Columbia require one party give consent. The other 12 states require consent be given by all those involved in the recording. These same rules, more or less, apply to recording conversations not on the phone.

They are not allowed to obtain criminal records and other forms of court documents that are closed to the public. They can, however, check to see if there are court documents and criminal records as long as they use legal methods.

Private investigators are not allowed to go into property illegally. They cannot break and enter, in other words. If they do, they can be charged with a crime just as any other person could be charged for breaking and entering.

Private investigators can run credit checks but they must have consent (in writing) before doing so. A credit report is considered by law to be private information. In addition, private investigators must also have a legal purpose in order to run the credit check.

In all states, private investigators are not allowed to use illegal actions to get information. This might include bribery or threatening a person with physical harm. The simple rule is that private investigators are not allowed to break the law in order to do their jobs. They are considered no different than other citizens in this regard.

It should be noted that information that is gained through illegal methods is often not allowed to be used in court or other legal proceedings. Breaking the laws to get information often results in no gain for the client or the private investigators but rather trouble and frustration.

Watching Your Teen

It is no secret that American teens are faced with some serious threats and temptations these days. Most parents want to know what their teen-aged children are up to when they (the kids) are out of sight. This is especially true if the child begins to exhibit odd or dangerous behavior. Seeing this type of behavior often makes parents wonder if there is any way to find out what is going on in their child’s life. This is when working with a private investigator can provide a solution. A professional private investigator can provide parents with information that the parents would not have access to otherwise.

When to Consider Hiring a Private Investigator:

It should be noted right at the start that hiring a private investigator to follow your child when there is no legitimate basis for doing so can be a very bad idea. Most intelligent adults can fill in the blanks as to why this can backfire on them, but there are times when knowing what the child is doing is worth the risk. So, what types of behavior may call for the use of a private investigator?

If you believe your teen is involved in drugs, you may want more information or proof that this is the case. Your teen may feel that he or she has been spied upon if your action comes to light, but for many parents, that is not the issue. The real issue is the Phoenix Disability Fraud Investigatorwell-being of the child. When a teen is on drugs, parents want to know, and working with a professional private investigator is one way to get that knowledge.

If your teen suddenly has more cash or valuable items than he or she should have, you may want to see where that sudden wealth is coming from. Common sense says that if your teen has a job he or she will have more disposable cash. But, if your teen does not work, yet seems to have expensive items or a lot of unexplained cash, you may want to know how the teen came up with these things.

No parent wants to believe that their child is stealing or selling drugs, but the truth is many teens do exactly that. A professional private investigator can keep an eye on the teen and find out where that money or those items are coming from.

If your teen is showing unusual behavior patterns such as violence, silence, or late-night activities, you may want to find out what is behind this. It is not uncommon for good teens to get involved with bad teens. There may not be any drugs, alcohol, or sex involved at all, but changes in behavior can be seen. Many parents, who try to get their teen to talk and open up, only find silence from the child. By working with a private investigator the parents can get some answers to some hard (and often confusing) questions.

If you are concerned about your teen’s behavior and want some answers, consider talking to a private investigator who may be able to get to the bottom of what is going on with your child.

Private Investigators And Video Surveillance

Technology has come a long way over the last few years, and private investigators are taking advantage of these advances to better serve their clients. One of the advances that private investigators are using with great success these days is video surveillance. This technology is being used by a wide variety of industries and law enforcement authorities as well and for good reason: it works.

It is no secret that video surveillance is used across America in virtually every place one can imagine. From street corners to shopping centers, these tiny cameras are watching all of us, often while we are ignorant of their presence. Private investigators are also using these cameras in their work as well.

Here are a few reasons why:

Seeing Is Believing:

Not that long ago, many private investigators were called upon to make verbal or written reports that were not back up with visual proof. This could turn into a “he said, she said” encounter. With video recordings, what you see is what you get. There are few ways of denying what is seen on video. It is what it is.

Legal Evidence:

Private investigators can use video surveillance cameras to prove (or disprove) the activities of a particular person or group of people. For instance, if a business believes theft is going on in its store or warehouse, private investigators can set up cameras and record the activities that go on in the location. If someone is seen stealing, the video recording can be used (normally) to bring charges against the offender. Again, seeing the activity take place on video (or digitally) removes any mystery.

How Private Investigators Use Video Surveillance:

When using this technology, private investigators will make sure that the recording contains date and time stamps. This can be crucial in proving when an event took place and is one of those small things that non-professionals may forget to put into place.

Private investigators will also have the experience and expertise to know where best to place the camera for maximum effect. It Private Investigator Phoenix Azmakes no sense to install a device if that device does not have a good field of vision. While this may sound like a simple task, it is often one of the more difficult as it is important to make sure that the device is concealed properly while remaining fully functional.

Move It:

Private investigators understand that not all video surveillance is static. This means that private investigators must be ready and able to move with the target, recording important activities as they occur. This often means that private investigators must have access to a variety of different cameras from hand-held to tiny, concealed devices.

Local Laws:

Many of those who need video surveillance work done for them are not aware of local, state, or federal laws concerning this type of activity. Professional private investigators know the laws and they know what they can do and what they cannot do legally. This can be a very important issue and one that must be taken into account if one wants to avoid legal trouble or issues with using the recording with law enforcement or in court.

Private Investigator: What Does It Cost?

Hiring a private investigator is the same as hiring any other type of professional. However, because hiring private detectives is something most people have not done in the past, knowledge of the fees that are often charged is somewhat lacking. This article looks at some of the questions consumers may want to ask before hiring a private investigator and some of the fees that may be charged.

To begin, it must be said that costs for hiring a local private investigator vary according to location and to the level of experience and expertise of the individual or the investigating firm. The cost of hiring a PI in a large city is often higher than hiring a PI from a smaller city. Also, the more services that are requested (or needed) will cause the cost to go up as well.

Some questions to ask your private investigator:

Are services charged on a flat-fee basis?

It is a good idea to ask your private investigator what services (if any) are charged as a flat-fee. Some of the services that often fall into this group include: background checks, basic document research such as criminal records checks or vehicle registration checks, identifying cell phone numbers, and GPS monitoring.

What charges are based on an hourly rate?

Private Investigator In PhoenixThere are many tasks that the private investigator has to charge by the hour. This is common. You may also find a private investigator that works by the day, with a day being an 8-hour shift. As mentioned above, rates vary a great deal but generally run between $40 and $100 an hour with the average being about $50 an hour.

What are common added expenses?

Your private investigator may also charge for expenses such as mileage, certain phone calls, use of additional investigators, document retrieval costs, and copying costs to name a few.

Does the private investigator charge a retainer fee?

It is not uncommon for a private investigator to ask for a retainer (deposit). The amount of the retainer often varies depending on the type of case the private investigator will be handling. For instance, a simple document search may have a much lower retainer cost than working on an infidelity case.

The amount of the retainer or deposit can also depend on expected costs such as travel, hotel costs, amount of hours needed for surveillance, and the urgency of the case.

How are charges recorded?

Do not be shy about asking how the private investigator keeps track of expenses or charges that you will have to pay. The vast majority of professional private investigators know that they need to provide their clients with clear and accurate records of expenses. The old days of the private investigator simply spitting out some number for his or her services are just about over, and truly are over in most places. The professional private investigator will always be happy to prove (in writing or invoices) what was spent on the case.

The above are just some general question you can ask the private investigator. Make sure that you understand all of the terms and conditions before you sign the contract.

The Impact Of Insurance Fraud On Everyone

Insurance fraud is a serious issue that costs tax payers an estimated $40 billion annually. For a single family, the price tag is between $400 and $700 that they must pay on their premiums to compensate for what others have stolen. Private insurance companies and organizations that work to stop insurance fraud are among those that hire private investigators to reduce the impact of insurance fraud.

One reason that insurance fraud exists on such a grand scale is the number of insurance companies that are spread across the phoenix private investigatorcountry. The number of companies provides multiple opportunities for people to target the industry to receive money that they really have to right to. There are also multiple approaches taken to secure insurance money including the following:

•    Premium diversion in which employees of the insurance company embezzle insurance premiums.

•    Fee churning where a number of intermediaries receive commissions through reinsurance agreements.

•    Asset diversion by which employees steal the assets from the insurance company, particularly when a merger or the acquisition of an insurance company takes place.

•    Workers’ Compensation Fraud in which workers’ comp insurance is offered at a lower cost and then the funds are used inappropriately without really providing the supposed “insured” with coverage.

•    Disaster Fraud Schemes where those insured make false or exaggerated claims.

Some states sponsor fraud bureaus that will investigate suspected insurance fraud. Companies that suspect they may have employees who are stealing from them may call private investigators to perform background checks, surveillance and other investigative methods to determine the source of the theft. Individuals who think they are being inappropriately charged for their insurance coverage should contact the insurance company to learn the reason for any discrepancies in the premiums they pay and the amount due.

The Injured Worker

Workman’s Comp is one of the most abused insurance systems in the country. Employees are required to pay into the workman’s Comp system to protect their employees if they are injured on the job and accrue medical bills and loss of wages as a result. Employees who can convince their employers that they are more seriously injured than they really are, often by seeing doctors regularly and making symptoms a matter of record, can collect worker’s compensation while spending time off from work. The recent case of the beauty pageant contestant who was arrested for participating in a number of beauty pageants after she had filed for and received worker’s comp for a foot injury is a good example of how many of these schemes work. Private investigators took video footage of the woman participating in pageants wearing high heels and showing no obvious signs of discomfort.

Conclusion

Insurance fraud is another form of theft that takes money from insurance companies and tax payers every day. Reporting any suspicions of fraud or hiring private investigators with the expertise to find the fraud, either within the company or from the outside, will help reduce the impact these crimes have on people in America every year.

What Constitutes Parental Neglect During A Custody Hearing?

For many of us, the term “Parental Neglect” sounds like failing to feed, clothe or otherwise provide children with the things they need to be healthy and happy. In reality and according to the legal definitions, it more closely relates to abuse. During divorce cases where there is a dispute over child custody, one parent may accuse the other of neglect of their children. Either the court or the parent will typically hire private investigators to investigate the accused parent for evidence that can be used in court.

Specific laws differ from state to state. In the state of Arizona, child abuse and neglect are defined as “the infliction of physical, sexual or emotional abuse, exploitation, neglect, or abandonment.” The more literal definition of neglect is when the parent or other guardian fails to provide children with needed care for an illness or injury or leaving young children alone without supervision or locking them either inside or outside of the home without adequate food, clothing and shelter for their well-being. In some cases, letting children live in a dirty residence might also be considered neglect.

What Happens when Abuse or Neglect is Reported?

If the parent or another person reports suspected abuse or neglect to a social worker, a specialist is assigned to the case to phoenix private investigatorsinterview the people in the child’s life and use the gathered information to determine if, in fact, abuse or neglect is occurring. The parent may decide to hire private investigators in addition to the report to a social worker or in place of it.

The outcome of the investigation by the DCS team will be to determine if there are any real concerns that neglect exists. The result may be that the family is referred to services in the community. The outcome is typically much different when private investigators are hired to investigate the potential neglect of a child by a single parent, particularly if the accusation is made during divorce proceedings. The findings of their investigation will probably be used as evidence against the other parent in court. Since the court sides with the parent that the deem to be in the best interest of the child, a parent or guardian that has been proven neglectful of the child or children could lose sole custody of their children if not total custody.

In a case where alcohol or drugs are being abused by a parent, private investigators often use surveillance to determine what happens when the parent has custody of the child. Evidence will be gathered on video which supports the allegations of neglect. Activities such as reckless driving and criminal activity which could put the child’s safety in danger will also be documented. Any parent who has suspicions that their child may be in danger should consider hiring private investigators to protect their child. Since the court is not likely to be responsive based on the accusation of the other parent, securing evidence that can be professionally represented could make the difference in the safety of the child’s future.