A subcontractor is a licensed PI who offers specific skills, services, and
equipment to another licensed PI or agency for hire to perform part of, or
specific tasks of, an investigation. Many PI subcontractors prefer to work for
multiple agencies. A subcontractor benefits from this arrangement because he or
she does not have to worry about working directly with clients, running a full
service PI firm, advertising, or leasing a commercial office.|
How does this work? For example, a PI who contracts with a client to conduct
an investigation at $85 per hour might hire a subcontractor for the surveillance
aspect of an investigation for $40 per hour. The incentive for a PI to
subcontract a surveillance task to another PI could be one or all of
- To deal with personnel, time, or equipment issues.
Many PIs work with skeleton crews or do not have the
particular expertise or equipment needed to complete an
investigation. In addition to extensive skills and
experience, a PI subcontractor might use more
specialized equipment such as GPS tracking devices, a
motorcycle to use in heavy traffic, a surveillance van
with a periscope, a remote camera, or an
aircraft/helicopter capability, etc.
- To receive the same or better service from the
subcontractor than the PI could have provided alone.
- To lower the overall risk of possibly losing a
subject during surveillance due to inexperience.
Subcontractors are usually required to provide copies of
their state license and proof of being fully
self-insured before an investigative firm or another PI
will contract their services.