What Is Legal For A Private Investigator in Edinburgh?

Are you considering hiring a private investigator in Edinburgh? If so, it’s important to know what a private investigation agency is and isn’t legally allowed to do. 

We take a look at what private investigators can legally do in Scotland’s capital city and discuss some of the private investigation services that they can provide, so you can decide if this route is right for you.

What is a Private Investigator Allowed to Do in Scotland?

In general, a private investigator in Edinburgh will be able to carry out many of the same activities as local authorities might, but there are some important differences between the two. 

For example, police officers are allowed to use more intrusive methods when conducting an investigation, such as wiretapping phones or carrying out search warrants, whereas a private investigator usually relies on less invasive methods.

The methods used by professional investigators include surveillance, tracking someone’s movements, conducting background checks, interviewing people, and obtaining crucial information using open-source intelligence.

We go into more detail on how private investigators legally conduct their services:

How Do Private Investigators Legally Find Missing Persons?

In Edinburgh, a private investigator can use a variety of methods to find missing persons. These may include the methods already mentioned, such as conducting background checks, interviewing people who know the missing person, and carrying out surveillance.

However in some cases, private investigators may be able to access private records or documents that can help them locate a missing person.

How Do Private Detectives Legally Get Background Information?

The methods private detectives can use to gather background information depends largely on the case that is being worked on. For instance, some detectives specialise in certain types of cases, such as intellectual property theft, fraud investigations, matrimonial investigations, and corporate private investigator services, whereas others focus more on investigative services to law firms or working with law enforcement.

If a corporate private investigation is being conducted to perform background checks on potential new employees at a company, private investigators have access to databases and public records to check the personal, financial, and criminal histories of the subjects in question.

How Do Edinburgh Private Investigators Legally Conduct Surveillance?

Private investigators are allowed to conduct surveillance in order to gather information. This may involve following someone, vehicle tracking, or setting up cameras to record their activities. 

If required, private investigators can also carry out covert surveillance, which is when they collect information without the person’s knowledge or consent.

How Do Private Investigators Legally Interview People?

Local private investigator agencies in Edinburgh are allowed to interview people in order to gather information for both corporate clients and private clients. This may involve talking to the person’s friends, family, or colleagues. In some cases, private investigators may also be able to interview people who have been involved in the person’s life, such as their ex-partners or former employers.

How Do Private Investigators Use the Information They Collect?

The information that private detectives obtain can be legally used for a variety of purposes. For example, it can be used to help locate a missing person, investigate a crime, track down a debtor, be used to carry out a background check, or to verify someone’s identity.

What Can’t a Private Investigator Do?

Essentially, a private investigator in Edinburgh cannot break the law or encourage other people to break the law, otherwise they could be prosecuted and face jail time. 

In addition, Edinburgh private investigators cannot use intrusive methods when conducting an investigation, such as wiretapping phones or carrying out search warrants, and are unable to access private records or documents without the consent of the person being investigated.

However, a private investigator has the necessary capabilities to gather information about a person despite certain limitations on what they can do. By familiarising yourself with the limits of private detective services, you can ensure that your private investigation is conducted within the bounds of the law.

How Global Investigations Can Help

Global Investigations is a private detective agency providing a comprehensive private investigation service in Edinburgh.

Our highly qualified private detectives conduct their work in a legal, professional way, and use the most sophisticated investigative methods. They are highly skilled in a range of investigative areas, such as surveillance solutions, security services, employee misconduct, tracing missing people, evidence gathering for legal proceedings, and much more.

We understand that every client’s needs are different and requires a unique approach, so our Edinburgh private detectives conduct investigations to meet your specific needs. 

Call us on 0800 073 3555 or use our simple online contact form today to learn more about our Edinburgh private investigation services and how we can help. 

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We are the highest rated private detective firm in the UK, trading  for over 29 years. Your confidentiality is prerequisite with all we do and your case will be handled with the utmost care. Ask us anything and we will be happy to assist, with no obligation to proceed at all.