How to Hire a Private Investigator To Catch a Cheating Spouse
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How to Hire a Private Investigator To Catch a Cheating Spouse


Nothing stings like the betrayal of a spouse or significant other. Most experts agree that if your spouse cheats on you, the best way to confirm it is to hire a private investigator. However, before you hire an investigator, doing some snooping on your own is also an option. If you see signs that your spouse is cheating, read on.

Not only does this ensure that you do need an investigator, it can also help cut down on the man hours (and the cost) if you do since you can give the PI more information to work with.

Here are some tricks you can use to confirm or clear up suspicions of cheating:

Don’t Break the Law                             

Do note that in most states individual privacy is protected – even from concerned family members. Seek legal advice before taking any action that may violate your spouse’s privacy. If you break the law and your marriage ends badly, your spouse can take you to court for your illegal actions.

This means that some of the tips that you’ll find on the internet are either in the gray area or downright illegal for you to do. These include: bugging their car, installing key loggers on their personal computer, hacking their phone, social media account, email accounts, etc. Yes, you’ll get the proof of the affair but you’ll be exposing yourself to litigation.


Looking For A Private Investigator

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Decide what you want the PI to do. Private investigators can track down all kinds of people and information, but their skills will vary. Some are good at following people or digging up information, while others can track down someone or something. Before you start looking, you need to be clear about what kind of work you want the PI to do so you can find someone with the right skills and equipment.
  • PIs can provide a variety of services, including background checks, tracking down child support or custody, providing electronic and video surveillance, or tracking down individuals. You can hire a private investigator to help with legal proceedings, including gathering more information for use at a trial, or to provide you with information that may lead to legal actions.


Check their Phone

Cell phones are some of the most personal devices we own. It’s therefore no surprise that it’s used by cheaters in the conduct of the affair. And most cheaters learn to secure their phones early on.

Some red flags to be aware of:

  • They changed the PIN that they’ve previously shared with you.
  • They start sleeping with their phone under their pillow.
  • They go to another room to take certain phone calls.

Most phones display callers or text notification on their screen even when the phone is locked. Take note of any phone numbers or email addresses you don’t recognize and run a search for it later.

And, yes, there are apps that let you track your wife’s (or husband’s) phone without her knowing.  But they carry risks with them.

Check their Browser History

If you have legal access to the computer that they use – it’s a computer for family use or if you have been given access to it – you can check your spouse’s browser history. It can tell you the sites and pages they go to. Visiting dating sites and social media pages that they’ve been keeping secret is a cause for concern.

If they erase their browser history after use, you can check again at a later date. If they make a habit of clearing the browser history, it’s a good bet that they’re hiding something.

Keep a Journal

Monitor your spouse’s activity in your journal. These can include trips, unexplained ATM or credit card activity. Take note of trips that took longer than normal, like trips to the corner store that now takes a couple of hours. Most cheaters will use cash to finance the affair as it leaves less records – a spike in cash withdrawals should be noted.

This will let you keep track of details and can help identify if your spouse is cheating. Also, as cheaters will often twist the truth or confound the issue, keeping detailed records is necessary when you confront them.

Be Prepared for What You’ll Find

While you may think that they’re cheating, it’s also a possibility that they have an addiction, family problem, or other issue that they’re trying to keep secret. Try to keep calm and don’t immediately fly into accusations without definite proof.

If someone is cheating, there is a good chance that they will be on their guard and will try to hide their tracks. Unfortunately, as much as there are pages devoted to giving tips on how to catch cheaters, there are more pages on how to cheat successfully.

If you find that you are unable to definitely prove or disprove your spouse’s cheating, it may be time to consult a private investigator. They have the skills and experience to prove or disprove your suspicions. As a bonus, they can provide evidence that can be used in court if it gets to that point.


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Look for someone. Once you know what you are looking for, start looking for names. Start with referrals, people who have used a PI in the past. If you don’t know anyone who has hired a PI before, start by flipping through a phone book, or searching for investigators in your area using an internet search engine or service like PI Now.
  • Once you have some names, take a look and see if they have websites, which will allow you to learn more than just seeing a line in the phone book. Most sites will list the business’ skills and services, which should help narrow down your list of people to consider.
  • PIs who are good at looking for information will do much of their work in an office, using the internet and telephone to track people down. This can be a useful service, though less so if you want a PI to follow someone for surveillance.


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Discuss payment. Investigating can cost time and money, and you should have a clear understanding of what your investigation will cost. In most cases, the PI will charge an hourly rate, which will vary depending on the service you are asking for and the length of time it will take. You may also be charged for additional job-related expenses like research, equipment purchase and long-distance calls.
  • Remember that you are paying for the service, not the results. If you hire a PI to track your girlfriend/boyfriend, and it turns out she isn’t having an affair, you’re still on the hook.


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Be honest. It is vitally important that you are honest with your PI when he asks you questions. Some of the information you give may be compromising or embarrassing. If you aren’t willing to share it, though, your PI might not be able to find all of the information you are looking for.
  • You should be able to trust your PI with private information. If you start to feel uncomfortable sharing that information, you may consider hiring a different investigator, one you feel more comfortable sharing with.


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