Private Investigator Last updated 01/04/2021

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License Fee Description Exemptions
$550.00 Initial: $29 for background check and exam; $41.25 for a state/national criminal history check (fingerprints); $550 for license. Renewal: $550 Reactivation of an Inactive License: $50 Duplicate License: $20 None


Private investigators engage of the business of obtaining or furnishing, or who solicits or accepts employment to obtain or furnish about: crimes or wrongs done or threatened against the United States or any state territory of the United States; The identity, habits, conduct, business, occupation, honesty, integrity, credibility, knowledge, trustworthiness, efficiency, loyalty, activities, movements, whereabouts, affiliations, associations, transactions, acts, reputation or character of any person; The location, disposition or recovery of lost or stolen property; The cause of or responsibility for fires, libels, losses, accidents, damages or injuries to persons or property; or evidence to be used before any court, board, officer, referee, arbitrator or investigation committee.


Two years from date of issuance.

Renewal Information

To renew private investigation license requires submission of the Private Investigator Renewal Application (PI-21); Continuing Education Summary Form (PI-6); and Recordkeeping Form; 1 electronic photograph taken within the last 6 months; and fees.

Duplicate License Requirements

The investigator must state the circumstances of the loss or destruction of the identity card on a PS-23 form; One electronic photograph taken within the last 6 months must be provided; and fees.

Processing Time

Processing Time Description
1 Month Processing time depends on completion of application and background review.

Prerequisites and Requirements


Must be at least 18 years old; Must be eligible to work in the United States; Must be of good moral fitness as defined by law and administrative rule; Must have 1,500 hours of documented clock hours of investigatory work experience, an approved course of study, or a combination of work and study as approved by DPSST; Must have corporate surety bond, an irrevocable letter of credit issued by an insured institution as defined in ORS 706.008 or such other security as DPSST may prescribe by administrative rule in the sum of at least $5,000, or errors or omission insurance in the sum of at least $5,000.

Required Documentation

Three letters of professional references (none of which are from a person who is related to the applicant by blood or marriage), two recent passport-quality photograph taken in the last six months for inclusion on the license (electronic preferred), proof of corporate surety bond or errors or omissions insurance (see above); submission of fingerprints (on a DPSST-provided fingerprint card or through electronic submission through FieldPrint (more information available on DPSST website:; a signed PI Code of Ethics (Form PI-27).
If applicable: Corporation Division Information if doing business under a assumed name.

Examination Information

Applicants for initial licensure as a private investigator are required to successfully complete an exam designed to test professional investigator competency.
To schedule an exam: Call 503-378-8531.
Exam Locations: Agency offices
Exam Results: 86 percent or higher. Exam may be retaken up to three separate times, if the applicant does not pass they must wait one year before retaking the exam.

No exam required for renewal.

Continuing Education Requirements

32 hours of continuing education must be completed and reported every two years, with two of those hours dedicated to ethics.

Bonding Requirements

$5,000 corporate surety bond (OR errors and omissions insurance; see below)

Insurance Requirements

$5,000 errors and omissions insurance naming individual licensee (OR corporate surety bond; see above)

Additional Information

Other Information

Private investigator licensing and regulatory inquiries can be made directly to the DPSST Private Security/Investigators Licensing Program at 503 378-8531 or email at

Statutes, Administrative Rules, Ordinances

Other Detail Information

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