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How do I become a Licensed Private Investigator in New Jersey?

Currently New Jersey laws refer to Private Investigators as Private Detectives and are licensed under the Private Detective Act of 1939. In addition, rules of the Division of State Police, designated Chapter 55 of Title 13 of the New Jersey Administrative Code, were promulgated by the Superintendent of State Police, to implement the Private Detective Act of 1939, N.J.S. 45:19-8 et seq. as amended. For further information go to the NJ State Police Private Detective Unit website at:

In general, applicants for a Private Detective License are required to have a minimum of five (5) years investigative experience and will undergo a N.J. State Police background check, including a nationwide fingerprint record check. They must provide references and be known to be of good character and conduct.


How do I get the 5 years of investigative experience?

The investigative experience may come from having a law enforcement background, military background or private sector investigative experience such has having worked in the loss prevention field or doing insurance investigations. It is up to the applicant to fulfill this requirement. Applicants may also elect to work under the license of an established and licensed Private Investigator company until they have gained the required experience.

( Disclaimer: This information is provided as a general summary of licensing requirements. It is incumbent on every interested applicant to fully research current laws, rules and regulations to assure compliance. The NJ State Police are the licensing authority and will be your best source for compliance.)