Using a Private Investigator for Child Custody, Divorce, and Other Family Law Disputes
By Detective Robinson | Last updated February 22, 2024
Family law matters benefit from use of experienced private investigators (P.I.s) to gather evidence about the other party’s suspected activities.
Using a private investigator for child custody, divorce, or other family-related legal disputes produces optimal results. Like attorneys, P.I.s are state licensed professionals and must follow legal procedures to ensure the information they gather is accurate and legally admissible.
This article discusses private investigators and what you should hire one.
The Role of a Private Investigator: The Basics
Family law disputes typically involve “conjecture” and hostile arguments rater than investigative fact-finding. Private investigators are trained to identify evidence relevant to discovery, and a skilled P.I is your best fact-finding resource.
Selecting a private investigator will obtain the best evidence as well as save time and money!
We have years of experience in performing the basics:
- Collection of Evidence – experts in the search and analysis of documents including, request of police reports, civil judgments, criminal records, talking to people, and use of surveillance and undercover operations.
- Surveillance – Working within the confines of the law, a P.I. often watches an individual to see where they go, how they interact with their children (if it’s a custody case, for example), whether they’re living a secret life, etc.
- Expert Technical Skills and Resources Provided at No Extra Cost –
Licensing requirements for a private detective are stringent in Pennsylvania. Licensure in Pennsylvania requires five years or more of related work experience in law, law enforcement, security and legal training (and/or a relevant degree), investigative related work experience, completion of a background check investigation conducted by both PA State Police and County Detectives. A legal petition is required to be submitted to the distract attorney or judge prior to granting a private detective license in PA. PA Private Detectives are required to be PA ACT 235 Agent certified and licensed as well. Be sure to ask for these credentials before hiring a detective agency.
Hiring an investigator yourself is a better option than using one recommended routinely by an attorney. The best P.I.s. are independent agencies with no informal or formal relationship with anyone law firm or attorney. This helps ensure that the P.I. is working for you and not your attorney.
Using a Private Investigator for Infidelity Investigation
Through surveillance of the party, monitoring and other methods such as digital forensics, P.I.s often are able to prove infidelity or at least activities suggesting an affair.
A private investigator also can help find assets (and liabilities, such as debt). This may be relevant when determining property division of marital assets, child support, and spousal support. It’s not uncommon for parties to attempt to hide assets once they believe divorce is imminent. A P.I. can often find hidden assets by searching through various databases and good field investigative skills.
Using a Private Investigator for Child Custody and Child Support Investigations
Child custody determinations are generally made with the child’s own best interests in mind, regardless of what the parents would prefer. In some cases, using a P.I. for child custody disputes can reveal whether a parent is capable of providing a stable home environment for the child. In other cases, there may be concerns about child abuse or drug use by a parent (which would be relevant for visitation determinations established by family court).
Investigators have a variety of tools and methods at their disposal to help with custody cases. After custody is awarded, P.I.s can provide evidence of custody or visitation agreement violations.
Types of Child Custody Cases Generally Include:
1. Custody Dispute – In a custody dispute case, an investigator will gather the information needed to provide the facts in court. This is helpful if the other parent is making accusations that need to be disproven.
2. Custody Agreement Violation – If you believe the other parent is violating the terms of the custody agreement, it takes evidence to prove it in court. Violations include not picking up or dropping off the child at the appropriate time, having dangerous associates around the child, or failing to take the child to agreed-upon appointments.
3. Neglect and Abuse – These serious situations call for intervention right away, and a PI can help you do it. A PI will help gather the evidence you need to keep your child safe.
4. Proof of Cohabitation – If your child’s other parent is cohabitating with someone, you might be able to change your custody situation, or reduce child support payments. PIs can easily help you prove cohabitation.
Get Investigative Assistance With Your Family Law Needs
Using a private investigator for child custody, divorce, or other family law-related matters is a good idea most of the time. It’s best to get the truth and evidence you need established before considering the hiring of an expensive legal professional.
We offer superior Family Law infidelity, divorce, alimony, child custody support, inheritance investigations throughout the state.
Our civil case investigations specialize in Family Law infidelity, divorce, alimony, child custody support, inheritance legal evidence needs.
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Get started with your case today by contacting an experienced family law private investigator near you.
We have licensed investigators in Pennsylvania and conduct video surveillance for cheating, child custody, and alimony in the following areas: Philadelphia, Allentown, Harrisburg, Bethlehem, Bensalem, Lancaster, Bala Cynwyd, Doylestown, Levittown, Yardley, Bucks County, Montgomery County, Chester County, Lehigh County, Berks County, Northampton County.