The client will most likely feel like they are being interviewed by the private investigator or detective prior to taking on a case. Ethical and smart private investigators will make sure that the case request is genuine and there is a legal purpose for doing the investigation. The client should be prepared prior to contacting the PI by having a court order, a court case number, attorney contact information, and any other information pertinent to the case to demonstrate the legality and legitimacy of the case. The PI must safeguard against the results being misused. Investigative agencies will likely use a contract which will detail the type of case that is being requested, the uses for the investigation results, and a release of liability holding the private investigator harmless if the results are misused.
An important consideration in hiring a private investigator is to ask what equipment the investigator has pertaining to the specific type of case being requested. Investigators who specialize in electronic bug detection should have equipment on hand to discover wire taps and hidden cameras. Surveillance investigators and operatives who specialize in child custody, family law, employee misconduct, infidelity, court order violations, etc. should have video cameras, still shot cameras, and covert/body worn cameras on hand to conduct surveillance.