Workplace Investigations

In order to ensure the integrity of a company and its employees and (or) employers, a private investigator may be hired when there is suspicion of dishonesty and (or) other behaviors that may jeopardize the reputation of said company. Employers should be wary of whom they hire as their employees and be aware of such incidences.

Workplace Investigations can involve investigating several claims regarding: violation of company rules, theft, misconduct, compliance issues, sexual harassment litigation, discrimination, wrongful termination, and (or) defamation.

Thorough and effective investigations involving such claims should nonetheless, be objective and impartial. Additionally, the investigation should involve gathering appropriate documentation and evidence by a competent investigator. Particularly, interviewing witnesses. In order to keep the investigation impartial, interviewing witnesses can help because it allows the investigator to evaluate credibility of the claim.

In order for a completely unbiased, and impartial conclusion to be reached, the investigation should come to an evidence-based determination. This heavily relies upon the information that can be gathered and the sources of this information. The investigator should be able to properly weigh all sides of the evidence in order to reach such conclusion.

 

 

 

 

Background Checks

Background checks can be extremely important sources of viable information for an investigation. Level one background checks usually consist of online searches. By utilizing various powerful database resources, investigators can gain a better insight on the particular claim. Using online resources for information can also allow for cost to be kept low during an investigation.

Level two background checks include the online data sourcing as well as include sending an investigator out into the field. For an example, an investigator can go to the courthouses themselves and that way civil or criminal records can be pulled. Investigators can also go to Police Departments in order to get specific addresses, names, phone numbers and call logs. This will allow for the investigation to advance by providing the investigator that much more information.

Although it can seem as though investigators can obtain a lot of information, there is information that is also unreachable due to privacy laws. These can include cell phone records, and medical records.

Watch the video below for more details!

Surveillance- Uncovering the ‘Unknown’

Surveillance is a major part of an investigation. It involves the close observation of an individual in order to gather more information and insight about them and their suspected behaviors, claims, and accusations. Surveillance is essentially the bread and butter work for most private investigators.

Surveillance is done with hidden cameras, recording and audio devices, and detailed documentation. Surveillance is the key evidence for any case.

Say, if someone claims an injury at work, and it is a false claim, a private investigator will go out and investigate the injury claim of the individual through surveillance. This can be done by following the individual and filming their actions in order to prove whether they are actually injured or not.

Online Dating Scams

Nearly 66% of singles nationwide use online dating sites in order to expand their dating pool. Online dating seems to be a good alternative for busy professionals, divorcees, and people just looking for a quick and easy way to meet new people. This can come with consequences when you are lead into a scam.

It is easy for scammers to target vulnerable singles who long for a deeper connection with someone they meet online. Scammers will usually have an ulterior motive. They will start by creating a completely fake profile, designed to specifically lure their victim in. The whole identity of the profile from their made-up name to the stories they tell you of where they live and ect, are all fake. Afterwards, they will recommend that you move the conversation off of the website and onto somewhere more personal such as email, text, or phone call.

Once the romance scammer notices that the victims’ defenses are down, and that they have gained their trust,  they move into the realm of asking for money, gifts, and (or) banking info. They will make up elaborate lies and stories about how they are in need of help for some sort of fake personal emergency. or any other excuse asking for money. This is the number one sign, that you are in trouble!

Protect yourself by never sending someone money or personal information that you have not met. Reverse search the profile image and see what comes upon the web. Be on high alert for inconsistencies in their stories, grammar and spelling mistakes, and elaborative lies. If they do not want to video chat or skype with you, that is another sign that the person you are speaking to, is most likely a fake identity.

 

 

 

Scene Documentation

Private Investigators are hired in order to conduct surveillance and investigations pertaining to a particular case. This type of surveillance can range from following an alleged cheating spouse, to observing reports about false workers compensation claims. All of which require detail-oriented reports and documentation.

The initial documentation would be getting a description, car model, home or work address and making sure that the claimant can be located and identified. Next, the visual and audio surveillance evidence.  All of the evidence gathered from a scene before, during and after the investigation should be documented properly. This documentation becomes legal evidence if used in court and can be used to sway the outcome of the trial.

Child Custody Investigations

Child custody cases often times involve an immense amount of allegations and claims from both parents and these claims, most of the time, are lodged against each other becoming a heated issue in court. Therefore, hiring a Private Investigator could help tilt the evidence in a particular direction.

It is also vital that the party hiring the investigator is familiar with the types of child custody there are. Here are a list of the most common types: Legal custody, physical custody, and sole or joint custody.

Most of time, the concern for the safety and well-being of the child will entice a client to hire a private investigator. Private Investigators will conduct surveillance to get a better idea of the overall situation. The potential benefits of hiring a private investigator would be getting a possible upper-hand in the case. This includes: asset search, background/criminal record search, gathering evidence(video footage and photography), interviewing witnesses, ect. These factors are important to consider.

Workers Compensation Investigations

The Basics:

California employers must provide workers’ compensation benefits to employees by paying for workers’ compensation insurance, regardless of the number of employees.

When a worker suffers a work-related accident or becomes ill due to conditions on the job, the insurance company pays for the employee’s medical treatment and lost wages. Additionally, there could be compensation for long-term disability. This could cost the company thousands.

The Scam:

However, sometimes it happens where an employee files a false or fraudulent claim that they are injured, when in reality they are not.  This is a widespread and common crime.

What Paramount Investigative Services can do:

We begin by asking our clients to give us all of the relevant information and use our high-tech software in order to search and match up the information given to us about the claimant and the claim in order to begin the surveillance and investigation. We then perform the investigation and gather video footage which serves as evidence in court. Along with footage, a very detailed and specific report is written about each investigation. Therefore, not a single detail goes unseen and our clients are never left dissatisfied.

Tips on How to Hire a Private Investigator

Much of the general public probably has a skewed vision on what a Private Investigator is, What they do/don’t do, and how to find one that will get the job done professionally.  In this video, I include some tips on how to find a Private Investigator that is right for you.

One way you can obtain knowledge of private investigators in your area is simply by referrals. Referrals from friends, family members or colleagues can be a very efficient  and effortless way to get first-hand information on specific private investigators that have been successful.

Another way to get a hold of a private investigator is to use the internet. Google search private investigators in your city/area and (or) where you may think the investigation may have to originate. Researching online reviews, ratings, and company websites is a very easy way to obtain the most information. Compile a list of possible P.I’s that you have found match your needs as a client and narrow it down from there. So, do your research!

Additionally, visiting the local Private Investigator Associations is a great resource that can be used to find local and licensed P.I’s.

To take this further, make sure that you hire a LICENSED Private Investigator in your state. Make sure to verify your Private Investigator with their license number and this will show you whether their license is valid, current, and whether or not there are violations on that specific license.

Now, you have all of the tips and tricks to hire the perfect Private Investigator specialized to YOU.

Private Investigator Myths vs Facts

Private Detectives Los Angeles

A Private Investigator Can Follow Someone. – FACT

“Following someone” is referred to as surveillance in the legal world. Surveillance is the practice of closely observing someone and documenting the interactions, locations, persons, activities the subject is involved in, and at Paramount Investigative Services we specialize in surveillance.

A Private Investigator follow someone with GPS – BOTH

In the state of California, as long as your name is on the title of the car, it is perfectly legal to put a GPS tracker on the car. This comes in handy when working an infidelity case and you’re trying to track your spouse. For example, if a man suspects his wife is cheating and wants her car to be tracked, we can put a GPS tracker on her car as long as his name is on the title.  GPS tracking laws vary by state.

A PI Can Hack into Someone’s Phone or Computer. – MYTH

Hacking a phone or computer is not only illegal but is very difficult to do, especially if you own an Apple product. Although we are unable to hack into someone’s phone, we have contractors who can tell you if your phone has been hacked into.  (Luckily, if you own a Iphone you need to make sure the software is up to date.  If it’s “jailbroken” it then can be hacked and NOT updated.

A Private Investigator Can Get Travel Information like Hotel Reservations or Airplane Tickets. – MYTH

Most of the time a private company is not going to give out their customer’s private information, so a private investigator Is not going to be able to access this information. A company is not going to risk losing customers, or getting sued, to give out personal info. For a private investigator this can be frustrating, but as a consumer it is a relief.

A Private Investigator Can Get Bank Statements -NOT Legally

Private investigators have contractors who can get limited banking information in order to stay legal and only certain information can be provided to the clients attorney.

Private Investigators are Awesome -Fact

Though we are nothing like what you see on TV and I’m sure you’ve seen it all.  Sadly, the way TV portrays our abilities to get information is far fetched to say the least.  Often times law enforcement CAN NOT do or perform the way TV represents our industry.  Information these days is not a google search away or a phone call to a mysterious voice.  Sadly, we have to put in time, money, and investigative hours to get what is needed.  Example; google yourself and see what is available online.  Try your name in lower case, add some quotation marks on each end to see what pops up.  If nothing, add your city to see what pops up and finally try your phone number.  You’ll see it’s all bogus companies trying to sell information.  So trust me when I say this, Edward Snowden is NOT gang stalking you….  Or is he???

Drone Investigations

Today’s investigations have changed thanks to drones. The days of capturing an image from Google Maps are a thing of the past! We use drones when standard surveillance won’t cut it as the drone offers a perspective you would not get with a normal camera. My investigation firm favors the “DJI” drone because it is affordable and easy to fly. I personally buy a few “DJI” drones a year. I buy them used, as I’m not the most adept at flying them (so if I break it, it’s not a big deal), and they produce high quality images.

Criminal Investigations and Drones:

Recently, I used a drone for a criminal investigation to prove my client’s innocence. In this case, my client had a verbal confrontation with a pedestrian at an intersection near McDonald’s. My client drove away and went to the McDonald’s. While my client was in the drive-thru line at the McDonald’s, the pedestrian reappeared and the two had a second verbal confrontation. The pedestrian claimed my client was the aggressor and accused my client of driving after him to harass him, but my drone images proved that the pedestrian went out of his way to follow my client.

I flew the drone 400 feet over the intersection and captured a high-quality image. Then, I mapped out the path the pedestrian walked to get to my client’s car in the McDonald’s drive-thru. With this image, I was able to demonstrate to the district attorney that the pedestrian had to walk 300 feet to reach my client, making it clear that the pedestrian was the aggressor.