What should I be looking for in a private investigator?

When hiring a private investigator, make sure they are licensed, insured, and vetted. You can verify current license status on the Washington Department of Licensing website for free. All investigators should be able to provide their license and proof of insurance upon request.

Vetted means they are in good standing as a business. We recommend looking for their membership in investigative associations. These associations usually review their members, making sure they offer quality service.

You can also check with the Better Business Bureau for an investigator’s membership and status. Also look for reviews on Google, Yelp, and Angi.

How do I get started hiring a private investigator? Then what?

However you are comfortable! Email or call is best, and we can discuss your case with you. We will review the details and needs of your case and determine whether we are able to take it, and what the scope of work needed will be. Please be aware that we are not able to take every case.

When the investigator agrees to take your case, a contract will be drawn up detailing the service(s) to be conducted and the specifics of costs and payment. When the contract has been reviewed and signed, the investigator will conduct the investigation, keeping you apprised of the case progress. Investigation cannot begin until the contract is signed and returned to us.

At the end of the investigation, the investigator will provide a detailed report, any evidence collected, receipts, and an invoice for your records.

What information should I provide?

As much as possible! When emailing or talking directly with the investigator, please include as many details of what you’re seeking as possible. If you need to leave a voicemail message, please provide a brief overview of what you’d like to achieve by hiring a private investigator–e.g., “I think my ex may be violating the terms of our custody agreement and I need evidence” or “We need an investigator for a personal injury case.” Please be sure to provide accurate contact information: your email address and phone number. We’ll follow up to discuss your case in more detail and to get any additional relevant information for your case.

Providing as much information as you have, even if you’re not sure whether it’s relevant, can streamline an investigation, saving time and money. The information provided could save an investigator hours searching for knowledge you already have. No detail should be left out, because it could assist in finding the best course of action and resolution.

The initial consultation with the investigator is free. Communications with Rain City Investigations are confidential. And we will work to make you feel comfortable with requesting and using our services–there is no need to feel uncertain or embarrassed about making an inquiry or providing information that could assist with your case.

What can I expect for cost? How do you accept payment?

The details of a specific case will determine the overall cost. Most cases are charged hourly (this includes travel time), and clients may also be charged the cost of case-related expenses. We will discuss rates and payment as part of your consultation, and details will be included in your contract.

Most cases require a retainer. Any unused portion of the retainer will be refunded to you when your case is closed.

We accept all major credit cards, and credit card payments can be made over the phone or through our website. We use Square for online payment so you can be confident your payment is secure. We also accept checks and cash.

What guarantees do I get with a private investigation service?

Due diligence. There are no guarantees of specific results in private investigations, unfortunately.

All that can be guaranteed is that your private investigator will exhaust every rational avenue to bring closure to your case.

Example: We can’t guarantee a person will do a specific act while we are watching them. But surveillance may provide additional information about their activities that is relevant and useful to your case.

What kinds of cases will Rain City Investigations, LLC decline?

We do not conduct locate investigations or provide contact information on celebrities and public officials.

We also do not conduct surveillance in stalking cases.

We do not conduct vehicle license plate searches due to Washington state procedure that notifies the vehicle owner when their vehicle plate number is searched–it’s not possible to keep a case confidential due to this.

We are only licensed to conduct investigations in Washington state; we are not able to take cases in other states.

Our primary geographical focus is the Seattle area, including metro Eastside and south King County, and we may decline cases that are outside this range. However, depending on the details of your case, we may in some circumstances be able to take cases outside these areas.

We reserve the right to decline cases that are outside our scope. We will endeavor to provide referral or resources if we are not able to take a specific case.


Contact us for a free consultation. 


+1 (206) 330-1998


  PO Box 78141     Seattle, WA 98178

13 + 7 =

Kevin is absolutely amazing. Excellent service and incredibly professional. Very quick response and turnaround on investigations. He helped me before with a matter in 2017 and when I needed help trying to locate a guy who stole money from me, he looked into the matter and didn’t even charge me for doing the research. I highly recommend him.

“I contacted Kevin in hopes that he’d help me find an old high school friend of mine. I shared the information I had on her, and within 20 minutes he’d emailed back, letting me know that the information I had was the most current. He could have swindled me, and “taken my case” and found her. In this day and age when it seems everyone wants to take as much as they can, he stuck to his morals and helped me. I’m very grateful to him. I’ve been looking for her for over a decade. Thank you, Kevin for letting me know I was on the right track!

“Rain City Investigations truly exceeded my expectations.  Kevin was professional and very prompt. I called in for a service and within hours i received the information needed. I highly recommend that you bring all your business to him. He listened and understood my needs and really wanted to help! Thank you again Rain City Investigations!

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