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Planning a Career Change in 2021? Become a Private Investigator!

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If you’ve watched any detective shows recently, you may have noticed how they depict the Private Investigator as someone sitting on fire escapes or in cars with a camera, snapping pictures and jotting down notes. What they miss is the bigger picture. Private Investigators help people make decisions that could greatly impact their lives by providing them with the information they otherwise wouldn’t have access to, all while working within the confines of the law. It’s a deeply rewarding job. If you’re planning a career change this year, private investigation services might be right up your alley. 

What Are Private Investigators? 

Private Investigators (PIs) need to be driven by the details while possessing superb analytical and communications skills. In addition to conducting surveillance, they’ll be digging into records, gathering evidence, and verifying information. This could include checking out a job candidate’s resume, making sure they attended the college they claim they went to, and examining to verify whether they have a criminal record. They also conduct interviews to gather testimonials for lawyers and following court proceedings. As part of the evidence, they perform research, conduct surveillance, and track individuals as needed. 

How do I Become a Private Investigator?

To become a Private Investigator in Ontario, you have to meet some basic requirements including a minimum age and language proficiency. Most importantly, you’ll need to obtain an Ontario Private Investigator’s licence. To receive one, you’ll need to have completed a minimum of 50 hours of training regulated by the Ministry of Correctional Services and Community Safety. We offer such courses in a manner that complies with all training standards. With an Ontario Private Investigator’s licence, you will have to operate out of a licensed private investigation agency. 

Who Hires Private Investigators?

Private Investigators find plenty of work because of the demand, which makes it a lucrative job. As one, you may be hired by human resource professionals who want background checks performed on potential employees. Or, you may need to keep a close eye on a client’s employee who has claimed workers’ compensation, but who they don’t believe are actually injured. Business owners protecting their interests, families vetting their babysitters or caregivers, and lawyers verifying testimonies may also be on your client list. 

Interested in starting a career as a Private Investigator? Our aforementioned online, Ministry-approved training courses are available 24/7, enabling you to learn at your own pace and on your own schedule. Contact us today for more information. 

About the Author

Whitney Joy Smith

Founder of The Smith Investigation Agency in 2014, Whitney Joy Smith’s extensive background as a private investigator is matched only by her passion for the role. A graduate of several respected institutions, including Northwest Florida State College and George Brown College, her early years in life were spent between Canada and the United States. This education, along with her formative years as a private investigator in various agencies, informed much of her knowledge of private investigative laws, regulations, and operating standards in both countries.


The recipient of numerous industry awards and accolades, including the Consumers Choice Award, Best in Ottawa, and many others, Whitney takes pride in working closely with her ever-growing agency to raise the bar, maintain compliance, and meet the investigative needs of clients. Whitney is active in various membership and supporting roles, including the CPIRC, CBN, CAPI, Canadian Women’s Chamber of Commerce, and many others. Her experience-driven, thought-provoking articles have been featured in everything from Readers Digest to Business News Daily, and she strives to continually redefine standards for those in the private investigative and security fields. Learn more about Whitney and the team at The Smith Investigation Agency today.

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