Fraud Private Investigation in Los Angeles

All You Need to Know About Fraud Private Investigation in Los Angeles

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What happens during Fraud Investigations?

What Does a Private Investigator Do on a Daily Basis?

A Private investigator (PI), plays a critical role in helping individuals, law enforcement agencies, and corporate bodies investigate, research, and gather information. Some of the duties of a private investigator are helping to find missing persons, performing research for legal and financial organizations, and criminal investigations. As a licensed private investigator, you work for private citizens, attorneys, or businesses.

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Top 10 tasks a private investigator can do for you in 2020

Top 10 tasks a private investigator can do for you in 2020

From TV series such as Breaking Bad, Veronica Mars, Private Eyes, Strike, Scandal and the likes, we have definitely seen private investigators in action.

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cheating spouse in los angeles, infidelity investigation in LA

Suspecting a cheating spouse? Our private investigators in Los Angeles can help you!

A cheating spouse is hard to catch, posing as a daunting task for many. The fact that you are not a detective might make it almost impossible for you to apprehend a cheating spouse or also spot the glaring signs that your spouse is cheating. A cheating spouse usually tries to cover up their tracks to prevent any suspicion. 

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Debit card fraud, private investigator in Los Angeles

What is credit or debit card fraud?

How does credit or debit card fraud happen?

How can I protect myself from being the victim of credit or debit card fraud?

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private investigator cost in Los Angeles, Private Investigator

What does a Private Investigator Cost in Los Angeles?

  • What are the rates for private investigators in Los Angeles?
  • How much does a private investigator cost in Los Angeles?
  • Can I afford Kinsey Investigations’ services?
  • What are the detective agency costs to catch cheaters?
  • How much does a private investigator cost in Los Angeles?


    How much does a PI cost, and all these other questions, are what our private investigators in Los Angeles hear from clients on daily basis. Here, we provide complete and detailed answers to all the cost-related questions we hear about our investigation services in Los Angeles.

    When people watch crime movies and see private investigators in action; they assume that the work of a private investigator is effortless and easy. However, reality offers a different situation. The life of an average private investigator is different from what you see in movies and it is left up to the investigative community to clear up the misconceptions.

    In real life, crime is not effortlessly solved as the movies depict. Instead, a private investigator’s work is more technical and complex. A private investigator’s work is similar to that of an administrator in that it requires patience, critical thinking, strategic decisions, and a lot of time (though the time invested in each job differs).

    There are many services a private investigator can perform for you. In Los Angeles, some of these services are:

    Those are just a few examples among the many valued services that a private investigator can offer you. However, it is not enough to know the services a private investigator can offer. The real question is:

    How Much Does a Private Investigator Cost in California?

    Our Private investigators in California provide a variety of services that range from very simple to highly complex. That is why the first step in hiring a private investigator is to understand why you need their services. The more clear and specific you can be regarding your needs, the better you will nail down the actual cost.

    Investigative services vary widely in their complexity, as do their costs. For example, a missing person search might be as easy as a simple database search. Or it could take months or even years of searching, online research, personal interviews, travel to other states, and more, to locate the person.

    Below, we provide you with a list of factors that affect the cost of hiring a private investigator in Los Angeles. Also, you will find that our rates are well defined for some cases.


    Some private investigators in California will charge an upfront fee called a retainer. It is similar to a deposit, which can be applied toward future work. The amount will vary depending on the agency, area, and case. Make sure you clearly understand whether a retainer fee is required and how the money will be applied toward future investigative work.

    Hourly Rates

    Most private investigators charge an hourly rate for services such as surveillance or investigating a cheating spouse. The total cost is then determined by the hourly rate multiplied by the number of hours worked. The private investigators’ hourly rates may be negotiable, so be sure to agree on a price before hiring a PI to do the work.

    Can you afford to hire a private investigator?

    Well, there is no general pricing for private investigation. Sometimes, it might differ based on your geographical location. So, if you are in Los Angeles, your ideal questions should be:

    How much does it cost to hire a private investigator in Los Angeles?

    This question is not one with a straightforward answer. Private investigators in Los Angeles, just like every other location, do not have a set salary scale. Thus, giving an specific dollar figure won’t do any good. However, from different reports and interviews, it is known that most private investigators in Los Angeles charge about $80-$200 per hour. As a company, we charge $150 per hour because of the quality we put in our services and make sure whoever you hire is licensed. All the investigators at Kinsey Investigations are licensed.

    Nevertheless, there is no universal cost for private investigators in LA. The reason for the uncertainty of the exact value of a private investigator is simply because not all private investigators are the same.

    What are the factors affecting the cost of private investigators in Los Angeles?

    Overall, if you want to hire a private investigator, asides from the price, you should understand the reasons for the cost. The underlying factors behind the different prices of a Los Angeles PI is not as simple as it seems. Before private investigators charge you, there are various factors that we consider. We don’t merely charge based on the time put into job delivery alone. Always find out the different factors that determine the cost, services, and charges of a PI to avoid unnecessary complications in the long run.

    Some of the factors affecting the cost of employing a PI in LA are:

    •       Types of services rendered and their relative complexity

    Private investigation has different categories of services. PI is not merely about locating or trailing a person. There are other services such as surveillance, in-depth research, helping in child custody cases, and additional investigation strategies. And in some instances, these may even include court testimony. All of these services come with different price tags. The reason for the differences in price level is because these services require an unusual amount of effort and technical know-how. For instance, when you contact a private investigator to help in surveillance or a service that requires in-depth research, time, and resources. You should expect a higher cost than an investigation that merely requires computer and proprietary database research.

    Below are some of the prices for categories of investigations in LA:

    •   Following someone (surveillance) – Between $400 – $600
    •   Examination of relationship/financial unfaithfulness- Between $400 – $1,500
    •   Comprehensive research- Between $300 – $600

    Next time you approach a private investigator, always remember the intricacies involved in delivering your demand.

    •       Implementation of surveillance in the investigation

    Surveillance is a method implemented in private investigation for cases involving infidelity in marriages, child custody in family matters, financial fraud, and an employee’s financial crimes, among others.  Surveillance is one of the most sought-after aspects of private investigation as it provides evidence that would be hard for perpetrators to deny. The high demand for surveillance makes it expensive. If you meet with a private investigator to conduct an investigation that requires surveillance, there is more than a 70% chance that they will charge you a higher rate. For instance, as a PI agency, we charge $150 per hour for surveillance services, and the minimum surveillance time is 4 hours. But you receive photos and video of everything we witness, which is included in the price of those 4 hours.

    •       The number of hands needed for the investigation

    A third factor that determines the total cost for private investigation services is if the situation requires more than a single private investigator. If more than one PI is needed, that is a strong indication that a case is high-level. Thus, the cost of the case will be higher than usual because you have more people working on your team.

    •       The sophistication of equipment needed in a case

    Another component to the cost of hiring private investigators is the consideration of the complexity of the equipment necessary for the success of a case. As earlier stated, not all cases are the same. Some situations require only five to sixty minutes of research. In sharp contrast, some cases are far more complex and might require the use of sophisticated equipment. A case that needs the use of lie detectors or GPS units will cost you more than the standard charges. Some cases may even takes weeks to solve.

    •       The reputation of the private investigation agency

    A good reputation is something that every private investigator strives for. The reputation of your hired PI is a major factor in determining the price of their services. For instance, PI companies in Los Angeles such as our company will not charge the same flat or hourly fee as a novice private investigator. Why? Because companies like ours have spent years building their reputation over the years with a consistent track record of successful cases. To charge more, there are high standards and expectations that an agency must meet. Our investigators have years of experience, we are not new at this. When you speak with lower cost investigators, make sure to scrutinize their experience and years doing this and ask them about some of the cases they handled.  Before you accuse a PI agency of charging you excessively, consider their reputation and how it affects their cost.

    •   Market differences affect the operating costs

    The cost to hire a private investigator will vary depending on the market or geographic area being served. That being said, prices will be higher in metropolitan areas due to higher costs for licensing, insurance, transportation, office space, and other operating expenses.

    Expect to pay more for a private investigator in areas where living costs are expensive, such as New York, San Francisco, or Los Angeles.

    • Experience

    The cost of hiring a private investigator in Los Angeles will also vary based on the private investigator’s experience. A private detective with an extensive career involving working within in an attorney’s office, military or government intelligence or a career in law enforcement will be more expensive than someone just getting into the business.

    •   Travel expenses

    If travel is involved in solving your case, private investigators will pass these expenses on to you. Investigators may have to travel within the local area to other states depending on where the case leads. Kinsey Investigations does not charge for local travel, out of the Los Angeles area, yes. But again, we do not charge local miles. Some travel expenses include:

    •   Extensive mileage, gas, and parking fees
    •   Tickets for travel via plane, bus, or train
    •   Lodging expenditures for hotel rooms

    Travel expenses can add up quickly, so be sure to have a clear understanding of what you’re going to pay for.

    The above factors are some of the genuine reasons behind some high charges. However, certain abusive practices happen in the PI industry. Many people are not aware of the dynamics of the private investigation sphere (this is why we wrote this blog to keep you abreast). Some dishonest private investigators exploit the naivety of people to their advantage. This exploitation is an abusive practice in terms of cost.

    But how do I know when a private investigator is cheating me? I’m not in the industry, remember.

    As complex as the PI industry might appear, there are simple yet effective ways that you can recognize if you are unnecessarily charged. What are some of the signs that indicate abuse in terms of cost?

    1. When the private investigator does not charge you upfront, but instead, keeps you in the dark till the end of a case, beware!
    2. When your hired private investigator does not keep you up to date about the developments of a case, you should be wary of working with them. Under no circumstances should your private investigator hide anything from you. You are the client, and you have the right to have access to any and all information about your case. Our agency recognizes the importance of clients; this is why we regularly update our clients about developments.
    3. When your private investigator does what we call “milk the client” by suggesting surveillance at ridiculous hours. If you know this target is a lazy person, who does not get up or even leave the house until 9:30 or 10:30 a.m., there is no reason to start watching them at 5:00 a.m. or to keep them on 24-hour surveillance, especially if they never go anywhere.

    If the same individual is active and unpredictable, yes, we may suggest starting early, but we keep you updated on their activity throughout the day and you have to option to go longer or to stop.  We have had cases booked for 4 hours that became active and turned into 16, 17, and even 18-hour days. There are unique cases that truly require 24/7 surveillance, but if your investigator starts out requiring this, be wary.

    If you want to prevent being overcharged or you’d like to hire a quality investigation team for a case, you are in the right hands. There is no need to search further. Our private investigation is one of the best in Los Angeles and our reputation is stellar. We invite you to search for our reviews on Google, Bark, Angie’s List and Yelp among others.  Do your homework.

    Is it worth it to hire a private investigator?

    It does not matter what case we are working on or our area of specialization, Kinsey’s private investigators, are always seeking justice. We’re assembling documents, collecting evidence, and interviewing witnesses to provide our clients with the information they need. We’re earning ourselves a reputation for being trustworthy, honest, and reliable along the way.

    There are plenty of reasons to hire a private investigator. It may be personal such as the need to find a lost loved one, reveal if a spouse is cheating or performing illegal activities that could affect the other spouse, custody issues and many other reasons.

    The need to unveil the truth often requires someone experienced in how to obtain the information necessary. The skills of our experienced private investigators are far superior to those of an average investigator. Because personal or business investigations may lead to potential adverse consequences when not performed correctly, it is often recommended to hire someone professional that has the expertise in revealing various elements of the investigation and what is needed for the situation. If surveillance of an area is required, our private investigators have many hours in training to provide these services in LA and throughout California.

    Our private investigators in California perform many vital functions including:

    •   Investigating crimes
    •   Investigating people (their occupations, character, marital status, etc.)
    •   Investigating causes of accidents, fires, injuries, or loss
    •   Locating lost loved ones
    •       Locating lost or stolen property
    •   Securing evidence for use in court
    •   Fraud investigations on many levels
    •   Background checks
    •   And much more Click here to find out what can a private investigator in LA do for you!

    PS: Private investigators in California may protect individuals if relevant to the investigation and they protect property if related to the case.

    How much does a PI cost exactly? Our transparency is what sets us apart from other private investigation agencies.

    Our charges are clearly defined. We charge $150 per hour, and the minimum duration of service is 4 hours for surveillance. We provide you with an exact written quote before we even begin a case. You will always be apprised of charges up front. There are no surprises. If you wish to ask: “how much does a PI cost?” Then, we always disclose everything before we begin working for you. If things change during a case (which they inevitably can), we keep you abreast of any additional fees.  For example, if you hired us for 4 hours and the subject is still out at about at 3 hours 45 minutes, we will ask you what you want to do. Do we stay with them or would you like us to call it a day? Usually, the answer is “let’s see what they do next.”  In that case, we stay, and you know the costs involved because we let you know.

     If you are seeking consultation services on investigative matters, we are pleased to offer a free consultation. Note that each case is unique and requires a unique quote.

    If you want to hire a different PI and want to do your due diligence before deciding, call us at (310) 613 3755 or request a free consultation here. Whomever you choose, make sure your potential PI is licensed and has excellent reviews. Again, here is the link to verify if someone is liquesced in CA. (Insert the verify license link to BSIS please).

    Talking about reviews, see what our clients are saying about our investigation services in Los Angeles, CA.

How to hire a private investigator

8 things to know before hiring a Private Investigator in Los Angeles!

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