New Jersey Private Investigator License

New Jersey Private Investigator License

Before starting, you should get more information about a New Jersey private investigator license. This certificate will allow to investigate fraud and find missing people legally.

The law regulating this industry in NJ is an act of 1939. It says a person acting without a certificate is guilty of a misdemeanor. Thus, having a legal paper is a must.

Unlike in other states, here you have to pay a surety bond. Your credit history will be under revision as well. So, follow our tips and get a permit to start your career.

Qualifications for private investigator license in New Jersey

First, study all requirements for this permit. The Private Detective Unit is responsible for all procedures. There is a detailed checklist on their website.

There might be some differences with other states. For instance, this refers to the applicant’s age. He/she has to be at least 25.

So, the minimum qualifications are:

  • At least 25 years of age
  • A US citizenship
  • Experience of five years
  • Good moral character, no criminal record

There is no requirement for a degree. Unlike Maine, in the Garden State, there is no need to pass a written exam. An applicant must have five-year experience of working as an investigator. Likewise, he can be a skilled police officer.

In addition to these points, be ready to pass a background and fingerprint check. There is also a credit check when the authorities review the financial history. You must not have any past due or delinquent accounts.

The good news is there are no automatic disqualifications in this state. However, this kind of license is only for PI work. There is a different document for those providing clients’ security.

Application procedure

Once you meet all requirements, start preparing the necessary papers. Your first move is to fill in the online form. Here you will also have to select the type of document. There are different certificates for individuals and companies.

There are also detailed instructions for fingerprint procedures. The local police are using a new solution to take fingerprints. You have to go to, select the service and follow the instructions.

When applying, prepare the following documents:

  • Photo
  • Signed authorization for release of information
  • At least 5 references
  • Fee
  • Surety bond

The references have to be from reputable citizens who are at least 21. There is a non-refundable fee of $250 for an individual. For any other type of certificate, it is $300.

The amount of surety bond also varies. For individuals, it is $3,000 and $5,000 for companies. The applicant has to mail the application and supported documents to the local police:

P.O. Box 7068
West Trenton, NJ 08628


In fact, the permit is valid for two years. It is necessary to renew it within one month of the expiration date. There is a special form that you have to fill in.

In NJ there is a requirement for a renewal bond in the original amount. This also has to coincide with the licensing period of two years.

A PI has to submit an application form and a fee of $200 or $250. This varies depending on a permit.

How much do detectives make?

Let’s check the latest information updated by the bureau of statistics. According to it, as of May 2021, the median hourly wage in NJ was $20.29. Meanwhile, the mean annual salary is $57,820.

There is also a local association of PI professionals. Since 1955, it has been working to promote education and training.

Anna Gh

Anna Gh

Anna has more than 10 years of experience in translation and multilingual content writing. She is also a communication expert with extensive experience working in online news media, writing and copy-editing articles, conducting interviews, managing partner relations, as well as media monitoring, analysis, and reporting. Having extensive experience in online media, Anna has expertise in research and proofreading. During her career, she has been creating different types of content ranging from IT, educational, medical, and legal articles up to music press releases and CD booklets, including SEO-friendly content.