Staying Legal In A Shady Business
Occasionally, our clients request a service that would, at least potentially, require us to break the law. Examples of this would be tapping a telephone or committing a burglary to retrieve some stolen item. Usually, the client is unaware that what they are requesting is a crime or they mistakenly believe that a P.I. is somehow exempt from such laws. These misconceptions are often fueled by what the client has seen on a TV drama or read in some crime novel. The truth is that P.I.s must, in their investigations, adhere to all local, state and federal laws just as any citizen does. To do otherwise, the investigator risks not only jail time, but the loss of their P.I. license. In addition to protecting our own freedom and livelihood, we consider it our responsibility to keep our clients from running afoul of the law and also to make it clear to them that illegally/unethically-obtained evidence is generally going to prove worthless (or worse) in court. Furthermore, we can usually suggest an alternative, legal route to assist the client in achieving their stated objective.