Four Myths about Private Investigators

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Four Myths about Private Investigators

People have many different ideas about what private investigators do, and how we go about doing it. If all you know about private investigations is what you have seen on television or in the movies, you may have a distorted view of what we do. While their lives are often glamorous and filled with danger and intrigue, real life for a PI is different. Let’s take a look at four myths about private investigators.


1. Private investigators have access to everything

False. Despite what you see on television, finding real, useful information about people isn’t as easy as it seems. Private investigators do not have direct access to private records and it is illegal to obtain records such as bank statements, phone records, or medical records using the methods typically shown in the movies. Finding information legally takes time, dedication, and patience. A good investigator will find information or evidence and then verify it a second time from a different source. At Owens Investigations we take pride in never crossing that unethical line or breaking the law to obtain information. Illegally obtained information cannot be used in court, and may actually hurt your case.

2. Private investigators can guarantee results

If a private investigator promises to deliver the results you want, you need to look elsewhere. Another myth often exploited by television shows, investigators cannot solve every case that comes their way. A good PI will promise to search every nook and cranny for you but sometimes the information just isn’t there, and sometimes the facts may not be what you wanted or expected. You should always expect your investigator to do their best work for you, but not a specific outcome.

 3. Private investigators can break the law for their client

Sometimes a client will ask their PI to do illegal acts, perhaps unknowingly, such as record phone conversations or access text message records. A good investigator will inform their client such acts are illegal but will find an alternative solution.

 4. All private investigators are former law enforcement personnel that carry guns

While this might have been accurate several decades ago, it is no longer true today. Today’s private investigators have backgrounds in many fields, not just law enforcement or military. While law enforcement experience can be beneficial at times, private investigators often have to rely on the wisdom, insight, and training to accomplish their task, because we have no statutory authority to interrogate, arrest or detain people. Also, carrying a gun isn’t required or necessary for most PIs. It is true that some may choose to carry a concealed handgun, but many opt not to as we don’t intend to put ourselves in situations where our lives are threatened. Finding answers to your questions usually doesn’t require anyone to use a weapon.

If you have a situation where you think a private investigator might be able to help you, we would like to sit down with you and talk about how we could help.

Give us a call at 972-550-1200.


Ryan is the Coordinator of Business Development for Owens Investigations.


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