How to Become a Private Investigator in Ohio

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How to Become a Private Investigator in Ohio

Are you interested in becoming a private investigator?

If so, Ohio might be the perfect place for you!

There are lots of job opportunities here, so you can have a successful career.

But before you dive in, it’s important to know what you’ll need to get started.

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Keep reading to learn more about the requirements for this job!

Private Investigator Requirements and Duties

Of course, you need to follow some rules in order to get your first job.

You will also have some daily duties to complete on a regular basis.

Here are the main things private investigators do:

  • Filming events clearly from a distance with high-quality cameras.
  • Taking excellent pictures from far away.
  • Keeping themselves healthy.
  • Knowing what their clients want and need.

There are some other requirements you need to adhere to, such as:

  • You need to be 21 years old or older to get licensed.
  • You should know that Ohio doesn’t offer provisional licenses.
  • You have to provide a clean background record
  • Military discharge status isn’t considered for licensing.
  • Keep in mind you should be mentally fit for licensure.
  • As a future private investigator, you need to be bonded and have property damage and bodily injury insurance.

Private Investigator Training in Ohio

Although training isn’t mandatory, it’s a good idea to enhance your abilities.

To become a private investigator:

  • You must have a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • You should gain 2,000 hours of experience at a detective agency.
  • You need to pass a 150-question test administered by ND PISB.
  • While not required, having a certificate from a college or university in private investigations can be beneficial.

Armed PI Training

If you need to carry a gun, you have to finish a training program accredited by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission.

This also means you have to take 20 hours of handgun training.

If you want to use different guns, you have to attend 5 more training hours.

Now, you can read below to learn where you can train in Ohio.

Ohio University

The Bachelor of Criminal Justice (BCJ) program is for students who finished an associate degree in fields like law enforcement, human services, or police administration.

It helps students with technical backgrounds broaden their education.

This can qualify them for jobs in law enforcement administration, forensic science, or corrections.

The upper-division Criminal Justice major is for students who already completed an associate degree in areas like law enforcement or legal assisting.

If you have such a degree, you can skip some courses and go straight to this program. It’s designed to be finished in two years.

The curriculum covers various subjects like social sciences, humanities, and professional disciplines.

You can choose elective courses to personalize your studies.

Having a bachelor’s degree is becoming more important in this field.

This program improves your chances of finding a job and advancing in your career.

School Name Address
Ohio University Athens Campus Chubb Hall 140
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Becoming Licensed as a Private Investigator in Ohio

If you are looking to get a private investigator license, there are some steps you need to take.

In this state, licenses are provided by the Private Investigators & Security Services (PISGS) of the Ohio Department of Public Safety.

You will need to pay $375 for the license, plus $25 for the exam and any fingerprinting charges.

You will also need to :

  • Submit a recent photo
  • Five character references
  • Fingerprint cards
  • Proof that you meet all the basic requirements.

This includes:

  • Showing proof of insurance
  • Experience
  • College transcripts

You will have to renew your license once in 24 months.

In order to get the private investigator license renewed, you have to pay a fee and take some additional education hours.

Salaries for Private Investigators in Ohio

Now that you have your license, it’s time to land your first job.

You might also be curious about how much you can earn.

In Ohio, private detectives typically make around $50,002 per year.

For more detailed salary information in this state, check out the table below.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Lakewood $50,302
Willoughby $50,102
Batavia $49,702
Westlake $49,702
Strongsville $49,602
Xenia $49,302
Waynesville $49,302
Wakeman $49,302
Williston $49,202
Tiro $49,102

Regional Salary in Ohio

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Akron, OH50$54,300$26.11$74,560$31,000
Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN340$55,730$26.79$81,070$35,090
Cleveland-Elyria, OH470$49,070$23.59$63,290$31,940
Columbus, OH340$53,480$25.71$81,520$32,490
Dayton, OH90$57,210$27.5$93,040$31,340
Toledo, OH40$49,390$23.75$77,900$30,420
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Private Detectives and Investigators, OCC Code 33-9021, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where do private investigators work in Ohio?

Private investigators work for:

  • Private investigation and detective agencies
  • As independent contractors

Independent PIs work for:

  • Law firms,
  • Financial institutions,
  • Insurance companies,
  • Corporations,
  • Government agencies,
  • Police departments

What are some of the skills needed by PIs in Ohio?

These skills are some of the most important for a private investigator:

  • Agility
  • Attention to details
  • Physical strength
  • Discipline
  • Knowledgable of laws and regulations
  • Able to drive
  • Comfortable approaching people
  • Able to use technology and databases

Do all PIs in Ohio need a license?

The short answer is “yes.”

USA Private Investigator by State

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