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How to become a Private Investigator in BC [Part 1]

Hello Investigators,

As a Licensed Private Investigator in BC, the most common question I’m asked is: How do I become a Private Investigator? I’m not going to sugarcoat it: there are a few steps, and it takes a few years—so I’ve broken it down into two parts. Here are the steps I took, and a few tips:

In British Columbia, Private Investigators fall under the category of Security Worker and require a license.

1. Sign up and complete the Introduction to Private Investigation (IPI) course and pass a provincial licensing exam which is available through the Professional Security Knowledge Network [PSKN]. Cost is $600 + tax.

The course is four modules and says it’s 60 hours total but I would allow for at least 100.

Bonus Tip: The Professional Investigators’ Association of British Columbia [PIABC] offers a free Course Study Guide that identifies the 400 areas where the formal exam questions come from.

2. Once you’ve completed your coursework, PSKN will issue you with a certificate which you need to book your final exam your online exam via email:

One attempt at the exam is included but you can take a practise exam for $25.00.

3. When you pass your exam, PSKN will send a copy of the provincial exam marks to the British Columbia Security Programs Registrar, where you will apply for your license.

4. Apply for your PI Under Supervision license through the Province of British Columbia Security Worker License Application. Cost is for 2 years is $180.

5. Bravo detective! Now you have your PI Under Supervision license you can work for a Private Investigation agency (not on your own) to accrue the hours needed for your Unrestricted license.

This is where the real work starts! Stay tuned for Part 2.

Finally, if you appreciate my educational content, please leave my agency a Google Review.

Stay suss!