First and most importantly, attorneys are experts in the law. While attorneys vary in their field of expertise, whether it be as a divorce attorney, personal injury or criminal; they are dedicated to their position as someone who works in the legal field.
Private investigators on the other hand, are experienced in creative and efficient ways to investigate various arenas. Consulting with a professional private investigator can help almost any attorney’s leverage when they are representing a case.
Here are just a few of the ways an attorney can work with private investigators:
An attorney can work with private investigators for help in locating people for a wide variety of reasons. For example, if a retail store is searching for former employees that may have knowledge on a current retail theft investigation - such as employee theft - a private investigator will have the experience to locate potential witnesses. An attorney who practices family law may be searching for an heir to an estate or a criminal attorney may hire a private investigator to locate witnesses to a serious crime.
Preparation For Cross Examination
One of the most common reasons why attorneys hire private investigators is for gathering pertinent information for an upcoming trial. For example, a private investigator can discreetly follow a witness or a suspect to gather and report detailed information about their background, behaviors, and associations. This type of investigation can be extremely valuable for identifying information that may protect a client and/or provide the information necessary to prove a person’s guilt.
Depositions and/or Public Records
The role of a private investigator is continually evolving. Previously, the bulk of a private investigator’s duties involved following subjects and/or staking out a subject to learn their habits. The current role of a private investigator includes much more detail, such as interviewing witnesses or digging through public records for information that may be used in a deposition. Private investigators are extremely creative, analytical, and they know how to obtain information; all of which can benefit attorneys and their cases.
Insurance Claims and Background Checks
When someone is claiming to receive medical treatment for an injury, whether it be work related or from an auto accident, proving an injury actually exists can sometimes be difficult. One of the benefits of utilizing the experience of private investigators is their ability of discreetly staking people out who may not have a true injury claim. For example, if an individual is receiving worker’s compensation for an injured leg, yet it has come to the attention of the employer and/or insurance adjuster that the individual goes for a 2-mile daily run. This type of information can be recorded by a private investigator and presented as evidence against a false claim.
Surveillance and Digital Research
Before a divorce attorney draws up and serves divorce papers to a cheating spouse, their goal is to first try to prove the spouse is actually cheating. One of the most common services provided by a private investigator is determining if indeed a spouse is cheating. This can typically be accomplished in a variety of ways, including online investigating, interviewing witnesses, and surveillance. The information recorded by the private investigator can be extremely valued, especially in family law cases that involve cheating spouses and/or hidden assets.
Although every case is unique, an attorney can use a private investigator for a wide range of services. It is beneficial for attorneys to use private investigators for gathering information that goes well beyond pretrial evidence.
No matter how experienced, skilled or efficient an attorney is, it is often almost impossible to get all of the work done that crosses the desk. An attorney can’t be in the office cross-checking facts and do surveillance on a suspect at the same time. A private investigator can take quite a load off of an attorney as well as help them present a solid case.
Christian Denmon Founding Partner, Denmon & Denmon,
A Personal Injury, Divorce, and Criminal Defense Law Firm
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