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Private Investigator & Security Guard Licensing Information

Application Instructions

  • License Application & Instruction

    The applications listed below are available online, in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format. If you do not have Adobe Acrobat, you can download it http://www.adobe.com/.

    PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR FIRM APPLICATION AND FORMS
    SECURITY GUARD AGENCY APPLICATION AND FORMS
    Criminal Background Check: 

    You may start your criminal background check process after the receipt screen appears after submitting your online application and payment. CBCs conducted prior to an application received date will not be considered. Please review our criminal background check webpage for more information.

  • Applications and Instructions for Private Investigator Firms & Security Guard Agencies
    Private Investigator Firm License Application and New Qualifier Application

    Application for Private Investigator Firms

    Completed applications should include the following:

    • Completed Application (including employer submission of Experience Form)
    • Application Fee of $300 ($150 if less than one year before quadrennial renewal date)
    • Criminal Background Check from each City, County and State of Residence within the previous seven years
    • Fingerprint based Criminal Background Check from the L-1 Identity Solutions
    • Proof of Limited Liability Insurance
    • Academic Transcripts (if applicable)
    • Corporate Filings (if applicable)
    • Verification(s) of Professional Licensure from each state where licensure is held or has been held (if applicable)
    Security Guard Agency License Application and New Qualifier Application

    Application for a Security Guard Agency

    Completed applications should include the following:

    • Completed Application (including employer submission of Experience Form)
    • Application Fee of $300 ($150 if less than one year before quadrennial renewal date)
    • Criminal Background Check from each City, County and State of Residence within the previous seven years
    • Fingerprint based Criminal Background Check from the L-1 Identity Solutions
    • Proof of Limited Liability Insurance
    • Academic Transcripts (if applicable)
    • Corporate Filings (if applicable)
    • Verification(s) of Professional Licensure from each state where licensure is held or has been held (if applicable)
    Application Submission Information

    The Fair Information Practice Act In compliance with IC 4-1-6, this agency is notifying you that you must provide the requested information or your application will not be processed. You have the right to challenge, correct, or explain information maintained by this agency. Except for your Social Security Number, all other information you provide will become public record. Your academic transcripts are confidential except in circumstances where their release is required by law, in which case you will be notified.

    Mandatory Disclosure of U.S. Social Security Number Pursuant to Section 7 of the Privacy Act of 1974, you are hereby given notice that disclosure of your U.S. Social Security number on this application is mandatory for the purpose of complying with IC 25-1-5-8 and IC 4-1-8-1 which provide that the Indiana Department of Revenue may obtain Social security numbers from the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency for tax enforcement purposes.
    Failure to disclose your U.S. Social Security number will result in the denial of your application.

    Completion of the Application Process An application shall be considered abandoned if the applicant does not complete the requirements for licensure within one (1) year from the date on which the application was filed. An application submitted subsequent to an abandoned application shall be treated as a new application.

    Affidavit If you answer "Yes" to any of the four (4) questions on the application, the applicant must explain fully in a signed and notarized affidavit, meaning an explanation or statements of facts or events, including all related details. Describe the event including location, date, and disposition. Include all relevant legal documents , if applicable. Letters from attorneys will not be accepted in lieu of your statement. However they may accompany your affidavit.

    Agency or Firm Name As described in 874 IAC 1-1-2(b) of the Private Investigator & Security Guard rules and regulations, no agency/firm name or advertisements shall contain wording, slogans, logos, seals, graphics, or other inference that the licensee is connected with or in any manner represents any local, state, or federal law enforcement agency. We advise you to choose a unique name that in no way can be interpreted to be affiliated with any local, state or federal law enforcement agency. The Board does have the ability to request a name change before an application is approved.

    Application Fees All applicants must submit a three hundred dollar ($300) application fee made payable to the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency. This fee may be submitted by cash, check or money order. We cannot accept payment by credit card. All fees are non-transferable and non-refundable.

    Photographs All applicants must submit one (1) acceptable passport- quality photograph, taken within eight (8) weeks of the submission of the application. The photograph should be approximately 2 x 3 inches, head and shoulders view of the applicant, black and white or color, of professional quality. No "Polaroid" type photographs, laminated photographs, laminated identification cards or group photographs will be accepted.

    Criminal History Background Checks All applicant must obtain criminal history background checks from each city, county, and state of residence within the seven (7) years preceding the filing of the application for licensure. If an applicant has been on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States for any duration of time during the preceding seven (7) years, the applicant may submit their DD-214 Form (Discharge Papers or Report of Separation) in lieu of the criminal background check(s) for that duration of time.

    You may start your criminal background check process after the receipt screen appears after submitting your online application and payment. CBCs conducted prior to an application received date will not be considered. Please review our Criminal Background Check tab for more information.

    *The Indiana State Police report will be sent directly to you upon completion. An electronic copy WILL NOT be sent to our agency. It is the responsibility of the applicant to submit the original State Police report to be included in their application.

    Verification of Liability Insurance All applicants must submit an original or notarized copy of Certificate of Insurance verifying that the PI firm or SG Agency will have a liability insurance policy of $100,000. Note that the policy must list the "State of Indiana" as an additional insured on the Certificate of Insurance.

    For applicants who choose to wait before obtaining this required liability insurance coverage, the board will review all other application materials and, if qualified, approve the applicant for licensure pending receipt of this verification of liability insurance. Once this verification has been received, a license will be issued.

    Official Academic Transcript Applicants who hold a bachelors degree or higher in criminal justice or a related field may seek to use their degree for the purposes of meeting the experience requirement. Applicants who wish to seek licensure under this method must submit an official transcript from the regionally accredited college or university from which they obtained their degree, showing that all requirements for graduation have been met and when the degree was granted. Regional accreditation must be from an organization approved by the Board. NOTE: transcripts must be original, official transcripts. Copies or incomplete (note yet showing the degree granted) transcripts are not acceptable.

    Verification of Experience Form Applicants seeking to use employment experience of a minimum of 4,000 hours must complete Section l of the Verification of Experience Form and submit the form to their employer for completion of Section ll of the form. The employer must submit the completed and notarized form directly to the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency. Applicants who have completed the 4,000 hours / 2 years experience requirement with more than one employer must make copies of the Verification of Experience Form and send the forms to each employer for completion and submission. Experience must be verified by someone other than the applicant.

  • Insurance Requirements

    Insurance may be obtained after the application has been approved but a license will not be issued until proof of insurance is received.

    Insurance information can be found in the statutes and rules under IC 25-30-1-15 (Private Investigator Firm) & IC 25-30-1.3-16 (Security Guard Agency).

    Applicants for a private investigator firm license and a security guard agency must submit a certificate of insurance or other “evidence of financial responsibility” that is approved by the Board and meets the following requirements:

    • Is issued by an insurance company or other legal entity authorized to transact business in Indiana.
    • Provides for general liability coverage of at least one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000).
    • States that cancellation and nonrenewal of the underlying policy or other evidence of financial responsibility is not effective until the board receives written notice at least ten (10) days before the cancellation or nonrenewal of the policy.
    • Contains any other terms and conditions established by the board.

    The insurance must cover damages that the insured becomes legally obligated to pay for bodily injury or property damage proximately caused to a person by the insured in conducting business as a private investigator firm and must include coverage the following:

    • False arrests, detention, imprisonment
    • Malicious prosecution
    • Wrongful entry or eviction, or other invasion of the right of private occupancy.

    The insurance coverage may not exclude coverage for an intentional act taken by or at the direction of the insured that results in bodily injury, if such injury arises solely from the use of reasonable force for the purpose of protecting persons or property.

    IC 25-30-1-15(c) states, “If a licensee fails to comply with the insurance requirements of this section, the license of the licensee shall be suspended. A license suspended under this subsection may not be reinstated until an application for reinstatement of the license, in the form prescribed by the board, is filed with the board, together with proper proof of insurance.”

    The Board may deny an application for reinstatement of a license suspended under this section not only for non-compliance with the insurance requirement but including the following:

    • Any reason that would justify a refusal to issue, a suspension, or a revocations of a license.
    • The performance by the applicant of any practice for which a license under IC 25-30 is required while the license was suspended.

    Insurance Updates

    Please send your updated certificate of insurance by one of the options below with your license number visibly noted.

    U.S. Mail Service

    Indiana Professional Licensing Agency
    Private Investigator and Security Guard Licensing Board
    Room W072
    402 W. Washington St.
    Indianapolis, IN 46204

    Fax
    (317) 233-4236
    Attention: Group 10 – PISG

    Email
    pla10@pla.in.gov
    Subject: PISG Insurance Update

    Closed Facility Requests

    If your private investigator firm or security guard agency is no longer operating and you would like to discontinue receiving information from our agency you may send a written request for a closed facility status. Once a license holds a closed facility status insurance is no longer required. A license cannot be reopened once this status is assigned; you will be required to file a new application and meet all requirements for licensure.

  • Background Check Information

    A criminal history background check is required for a private investigator and security guard license in Indiana pursuant to Indiana law. The information submitted with this application and the criminal history report itself are confidential. The criminal history report is used solely by the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency as a condition precedent for licensure. Neither the application nor the criminal history report is accessible through or by a public records request except as otherwise provided by law. All applicants are required to submit background checks from every state, county, and city of residence from the past seven (7) years. Please contact the State Police and local jurisdictions for instructions on how to obtain the background checks as the process and requirements vary from state to state and city to city. Background checks from third-party institutions will not be accepted. It is the responsibility of the applicant to submit the original documentation to the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency for inclusion in the application.

    All applicants are required to submit a background check from the Indiana State Police. Please follow the steps below to obtain the background check:

    Using your computer web browser, go to http://www.identogo.com and choose Indiana.

    If you do not have access to the internet, you may call us toll-free at (877) 472-6917 to schedule an appointment. If you call, you will be asked the following questions instead of completing these steps yourself.

    Click Online Scheduling and choose the language you wish to use for scheduling (English or Spanish).

    Enter your first and last name and click “go”.

    Choose your Agency Name Professional Licensing Agency and click “go”.

    Choose the correct Applicant Category for your license type and click “go”.

    Select the location where you want to be fingerprinted. You may choose a region of the state, click on the map, or enter a zip code to get a list of locations in a specific area. Press “go”.

    Click on the words “Click to Schedule” across from the location you want, under the day you wish to be fingerprinted. If you want a date further in the future, click the “Next Week>>” link to display more dates. Once you select the location/date combination, select the time for your appointment and click “go”.

    Complete the demographic information page. Required fields are indicated by a red asterisk (*). When complete, click “Send Information”.

    Confirm the information. Follow the on screen directions to make any changes necessary. Once you see the data is correct, click “Send Information”.

    Complete your payment process and click “Send Payment Information”.

    Print your confirmation page. If you provided an email address, you will receive an email confirmation as well.

    Bring one the following with you to your fingerprinting appointment: Valid Driver License, Valid State Issued Identification Card, Valid Passport, Student ID with Picture and DOB, Work ID with Picture and DOB, Valid Alien ID card with Picture and DOB. If you do not have the above identification, you will need both a valid Birth Certificate and a Social Security Card.

    Arrive at the facility at your appointed date and time.

    The Enrollment Officer at the site will check your ID, verify your information, verify or collect payment, capture your fingerprints, and submit your data. This normally takes less than five minutes.

    You will receive a signed receipt at the end of your fingerprinting session which can be provided to your agency for proof of fingerprinting, if needed.

    The results will be sent to you by MorphoTrust USA. It is your responsibility to submit the original documentation to the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency for inclusion in the application. These results will NOT be sent directly to our agency electronically!

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    How do I apply for a Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license?
    What are the licensing requirements?
    What is the licensing fee?When does the license expire?
    Does holding a valid Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license authorize me to carry a handgun or weapon?
    Does holding a valid Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license authorize me to arrest an individual?
    When does the Board meet?

    Question: How do I apply for a Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license?
    Answer: Applications may be picked up at our office located at 402 West Washington Street, Room W072, Indianapolis, Indiana 46204; or an application can be emailed directly to you by sending an email to pla11@pla.in.gov and stating which application you wish to receive.

    Question: What are the licensing requirements?
    Answer: The basic requirements for a private investigator firm or security guard agency license are as follows:

    1. must be at least twenty-one years of age
    2. possess a minimum of two years of work experience as verified by a minimum of 4,000 hours in the investigative and/or security guard field. - OR -
    3. Possess a bachelor’s degree or higher in criminal justice, or a related field from an accredited Institution.

    Question: What is the licensing fee?
    Answer: The current licensure fee for issuance or renewal of a Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license is $150.00. An additional fee of $50.00 is required for reinstatement of a delinquent license; and the application for reinstatement must be submitted within 30 days of the expiration date.

    Question: When does the license expire?
    Answer: A Private Investigator Firm license and the Security Guard Agency license expire every four years on October 1.

    Question: Does holding a valid Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license authorize me to carry a handgun or weapon?
    Answer: Nothing in the statute and rules hall be construed to authorize any licensee to carry any weapon.

    Question: Does holding a valid Private Investigator Firm or Security Guard Agency license authorize me to arrest an individual?
    Answer: The statute governing private Investigators and security guards does not give licensees arresting authority. Only a law enforcement officer/official may arrest an individual.

    Question: When does the board meet?
    Answer: The board meets every third Thursday of every other month.

Renewal Instructions

  • Renewal Information
    • Private Investigator Firms & Security Guard Agency licenses expire October 1 every fourth year (ie: 2015, 2019, 2023, etc.).
    • The renewal fee is $300.
    • Each qualifier should obtain a limited criminal background check for the 4 preceding years for renewal. The background checks must be completed at the state level from the state the qualifier resides. Third party background checks will not be accepted.

    Renewal notices are sent approximately ninety (90) days prior to the expiration date. License holders with valid email addresses on file will be emailed the renewal notice. Those who do not have valid email addresses on file will be mailed the license renewal notice; this notice is mailed to the address of record with the Board. The Board has no way of knowing whether or not a notice reaches its destination; therefore, when a notice has been emailed to a valid email address or mailed, the duty of the Board has been performed.

    Paper Renewal Documents

    Private Investigator Firm Renewal
    Security Guard Agency Renewal

    Please note that if you hold both a PI Firm and SG Agency license you must submit a renewal form and fee for each.

    Required Documents:
    In addition to the completed renewal form and fee a limited criminal background check and certificate of insurance should be submitted. The limited criminal background check should be obtained by the qualifier for the preceding four (4) years. This background check should be completed at the state level from the state the qualifier resides. Third party background checks will not be accepted. The certificate of insurance or other "evidence of financial responsibility" should detail limited liability insurance with a minimum of $100,000 and meet requirements listed under IC 25-30-1-15 & IC 25-30-1.3-16. If insurance is due to expire prior to license expiration (10/1/15) a certificate detailing the next policy coverage period must be submitted.

    License Reinstatement

    Reinstatement information is for those that have allowed their licenses to be expired longer than 18 months.

    Requirements:

    Renewal Form: Listed Above.

    Fee - The renewal fee is $300. For a late renewal or a reinstatement it is $350 ($300 renewal fee + $50 late fee).

    Criminal Background Checks - Limited criminal background check for the 4 preceding years or duration Important Notice: The background checks must be completed at the state level from the state the qualifier resides. Third party background checks will not be accepted.

    Certificate of Insurance - Ensure your limited liability insurance is worth a minimum of $100,000 and meets the requirements listed under IC 25-30-1-15 (Private Investigator Firm) & IC 25-30-1.3-16 (Security Guard Agency). You may view our insurance requirements page for more information.

    Closed Facility Requests

    If your private investigator firm or security guard agency is no longer operating and you would like to discontinue receiving information from our agency you may send a written request for a closed facility status. Once a license holds a closed facility status insurance is no longer required. A license cannot be reopened once this status is assigned; you will be required to file a new application and meet all requirements for licensure.

Fee Schedule

  • Private Investigator Firm License Fees
    Private Investigator Firm License FeesFeePenaltyTotal
    Issuance Fee$300NA$300
    Issuance Fee - Between 1 year from the common expiration date to the date the renewal window opens$150NA$150
    Renewal$300NA$300
    Renewal - Expired$300$50$350
  • Security Guard Agency License Fees
    Security Guard Agency License FeesFeePenaltyTotal
    Issuance Fee$300NA$300
    Issuance Fee - Between 1 year from the common expiration date to the date the renewal window opens$150NA$150
    Renewal$300NA$300
    Renewal - Expired$300$50$350