How to Become a Private Investigator in Nebraska

how to become a private investigator in nebraska

One of the most promising careers in the state of Nebraska is private investigation. Private investigators are employed by the government, businesses and individuals to find crucial information needed for court cases and to locate people who are either missing or are fugitives from justice.

In Nebraska, private investigators are called private detectives, and anyone looking to enter this profession must first become licensed by the Secretary of State. Meeting the basic requirements for licensure, including gaining work experience, is your most important task if you want to work as a private detective in the Cornhusker State.

Nebraska Private Investigator License Requirments

Minimum Requirements

  • Age: 21 is the minimum age to be a private detective in Nebraska.
  • Provisional Requirements: US citizens and alien residents are allowed to become private detectives in this state.
  • Criminal Check: The Nebraska State Patrol will perform a background check on anyone seeking to become a private detective.
  • Service Record: Your military service is not taken into account, even if you were dishonorably discharged.
  • Financial Check: The financial history of a candidate is not checked prior to licensure.
  • Mental Health and Disease: Your mental health status will not be examined and should not prevent you from becoming a licensed Nebraska private detective.
  • Insurance Needed: You must be able to secure a $10,000 security bond before you will receive your private detective license.
  • Denying Issues: If you have a felony conviction or have been convicted of a crime of moral turpitude as defined by the state of Nebraska, you are automatically disqualified from receiving a license.

Education and Experience

  • Experience and Degrees: Nebraska requires that private detectives acquire work experience before licensure will be granted. Fulfilling this requirement requires 3,000 hours of work experience with no degree, 2,500 hours for applicants with an associate’s degree in a related discipline, or 2,000 hours of work experience for applicants with a bachelor’s degree in a related field.
  • Examination: You will be required to take a licensing exam provided by the Nebraska Secretary of State Division of Licensing. The exam covers the rules for detectives outlined in the Nebraska Private Detective Act, and 80% is considered passing. If you fail, you will have to wait 21 days before sitting for the exam a second time.

Nebraska P.I. Training Courses

The Secretary of State does not offer certified training courses for private detectives, which means you will have to schedule your own training. Typically, aspiring Nebraska private detectives will enroll in degree programs like forensics, criminal justice, investigation and law. These degrees are all related to private detective work and can aid your career.

Detective License Fees

  • Fees: Nebraska charges a $50 license fee and a $38 background check fee.
  • Registration: When you submit your private detective license application to the Nebraska Secretary of State, you will need to include a Release of Information form, two passport style photographs, proof of your education and/or experience and two fingerprint cards to be used in your FBI background check. You should also include any fees and verification of your $10,000 surety bond.
  • PI License Maintenance: Licenses expire on December 31st of each year, and can be renewed for a $25 fee.

Salaries Reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics

The most recent data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics was made available in May of 2015. According to this report, there were 100 private detectives working in Nebraska at the time. For the same period, Nebraska private detectives could expect an average yearly salary of $64,800.

Links and Resources

Nebraska Private Detective Statutes

Secretary of State Licensing Requirements

Nebraska Association of Licensed Private Investigators