How Much Does a Private Investigator Cost in the UK?

Often, the first question we are asked is, “How much does a private investigator cost?”

This is a more complicated question than it initially appears and difficult to answer until we have all the details about a case. In this article, we will attempt to cover private investigator prices for our most common services and explain why, in some circumstances, costs will differ.

The final cost of an investigation will be determined by the amount of time spent on the project, the service that is being carried out and the level of investigation required. No matter the case, we always try to provide our customers with the best ‘bang for your buck’.

In this price guide, we will give you a rough estimation of private investigator costs. Kindly remember the fees provided are only a guideline to what you should expect, and it is advisable to contact us to discuss your specific case and requirements.

Overview of the Most Common Private Investigator Costs in the UK

How Much Does a Private Investigator Charge to Find Someone?

Hiring a private investigator to find someone is called a Trace.

Our personal family tracing service starts from £150 + VAT for a Standard Trace within the UK. Our standard tracing service generally takes 15-20 days to complete, however, we do have other speeds of service if your request is urgent. We generally ask for a portion of the fee upfront (non-refundable) to cover the costs of research and administration, with the remaining portion to be paid only if we are able to locate your subject.

We do require all of the following to proceed on a Standard fee basis:

  • Full name, full date of birth, previous residential address from the last 5 years.

If you are unable to provide all or most of the above, the Trace will be called a Limited Information Trace and will incur a higher fee.

Please note the above applies to UK based searches and NOT International searches – International Traces will incur a higher fee – please call us for searches outside of the UK.

How Much Does It Cost for a Private Investigator to Perform a Background Check?

A great deal of our background checks are in relation to personal matters and we would always ask that you do not alert the individual by acting any differently or advising them of our intentions. Although we have different packages, a large proportion of our clients have specific requirements and we therefore offer a bespoke service. Our private investigator costs with regard to background check investigations would start from £175 + VAT for our basic checks and increase in price depending on how extensive our investigations are.

Our investigations may include due diligence, specialist database investigations, open-source intelligence, telephone research, discreet enquiries and often physical visits to addresses.

Another factor to bear in mind is whether the enquiry needs to be expedited. This will incur a further cost as the company will be asked to drop standard work to prioritise the case to return it in a much faster timeframe.

How Much Does a Private Investigator Cost to Follow or Watch Someone?

If you are interested in having an Agent watch or follow someone, this is called covert surveillance. Per Agent, our prices start from £65 + VAT per hour from base to base (dependent on assignment – minimum hours apply). This work will include all photographic footage, evidence and reports.

The price is dependent on location and circumstances and does not include expenses, for example entry fees or the purchase of food or drink if the surveillance is being conducted on licensed premises or in a restaurant.

We also offer car tracking via our GPS Trackers which allows real-time tracking of a subjects’ vehicle. The price depends on how long you want the Tracker on the vehicle for, but prices start from £30 + VAT per day (for 30 days of tracking – the shorter the time, the higher the cost).

An additional fee for an Agent to place and remove the Tracker is applicable, but the possibilities on whom is available to do so will need verifying before we undertake the job.

How Much Does It Cost to Have a Private Investigator Find Out if I Have Been Scammed?

In this day and age, scamming is a very big business globally and the threat is growing.

Here at Global Investigations, we have been investigating scam cases for many years and are seen as UK and Global experts in this field. Whether it is a business scam such as investment or cryptocurrency or romance scam we can assist. These investigations are usually performed on a capped investigation basis depending on the amount of information you can provide.

Generally, these cases start from £695 + VAT but can be higher or lower depending on the needs and budget of the client. We also offer follow up work on these cases depending on any pathways that may open to us. Location and intelligence can be crucial and often a capped fee is the best solution.

Why Choose Global Investigations Instead of Other Companies?

  • Reputable and experienced firm – We are experienced and professional private detectives and investigators with over 30 years’ experience.
  • Members of the ABI – Global Investigations are full members of the Association of British Investigators. The Association of British Investigators is endorsed by The Law Society of England & Wales and the Service Provider scheme of The Law Society of Scotland.
  • Outstanding client satisfaction – We are focused on providing a high level of client satisfaction and supporting clients through what may be a sensitive time. See our 5-star Google reviews here.
  • Affordable and effective – we tailor our services to the specific needs of each client. We are able to deliver solutions that are both effective and affordable.

Do you have more questions on the costs of hiring a private investigator? Call us on 0208 287 7770 or +44 208 287 7770 if overseas or fill out the form below to enquire online.

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