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Can anyone conduct private investigations or surveillance in Ontario?
In order to follow anyone legally or conduct private investigations, you are required by law to be licensed as a Private Investigator under the Private Investigators and Security Guards Act.


Licencing for Private Investigators in Ontario, are made under the (PSISB) Private Security and Investigative Services Branch of the Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services (MCSCS). 

To be eligible to become a Private Investigator in Ontario, you require three (3) things:

1. You must be 18 years of age or older;

2. You must be eligible to work in Canada

    (Canadian citizen, Permanent Resident, or have a valid Work Permit);

3. You must have a clean criminal record

    (or received a pardon for any convictions).

If you are eligible to become a Private Investigator, you must:

1. Take the mandatory 50-Hour, Private Investigator Basic Training Course

    (Cost $200.00 - $300.00)

   a)  Receive the Course Certificate and Completion Number;

2. Pass the Private Investigator Test (60 multiple-choice questions) with a minimum of 77%

    (Cost $75.15);

3. Apply for, and receive your Ontario Private Investigator's licence

    (Cost $80.00 every 2 years, renewable on your birthday).

Once I have a Private Investigators Licence, can I start work immediately?
First you have to apply to an Investigation Agency. Once hired, a Senior Investigator will provide you with on-the-job training with a training wage. Once your trainer feels you are competent enough to work on your own, you will most likely be given a small raise and be supervised as you are given simple tasks until you are able to take on more complex cases.

How much can I earn as a Private Investigator?

This will vary depending on experience. Some people who become Private Investigators are ex-police officers or people with other specialized services and experience. Private Investigators with absolutely no experience, typically start their on-the-job training at approximately $18.00 - $20.00 per hour, learn basic surveillance techniques, report writing and other requirements. Once you start to work on your own, your salary will increase somewhat. Most companies offer annual reviews and salary increases.  According to indeed, the average salary for a Private Investigator in Ontario is $22.45 per hour, which is 7% above the national average. Depending on how fast a Private Investigator learns different aspects of the job, they can expect to earn up to $100,000. per year.


**  Once you receive your licence, you MUST carry it with you at all times when working. **

**  Private Investigators in Ontario are not allowed to carry BADGES or any other evidence of authority other than their Licence. **

How to become a Private Investigator in Ontario?

Logo of the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
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