This is often an overlooked quality in an private investigator or detective but one which can greatly impact a case. In meeting with a private investigator, the client should note how the investigator is dressed. Remember, this is a profession and a PI should act and dress in a professional manner. If the investigator is not well-groomed and appropriately dressed in meeting with you, it is likely he/she will not look appropriate if he/she has to testify in court on your case. The same way an investigator pays attention to small details in their investigations, the attention to detail should also carry over to his or her appearance. An exception to this rule is a surveillance investigator who is on site. A 10 hour surveillance investigation in the summer is usually going to call for shorts and a tank top or similar clothing to maintain comfort.
Websites and online postings, brochures, business cards, and other writings should be looked at to determine a private investigator or agency’s writing ability. Spelling and grammar should be noted. Poor spelling and grammar will translate into a poor report. API’s philosophy is that the report makes at least half of the entire investigation. If an investigation does not have a well written, accurate, and concise report to go along with it, the evidence may not be able to be well presented in court. Most reports should contain only facts and not the investigator’s opinion, otherwise opposing council can and will pick apart the investigator in a court hearing.