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Private Investigators - Last Resort or Invasion of Privacy?

Over the course of the last week, I have been reading articles relating to family law and what's going on in the family law practice area. I came across an interesting article in Family Lawyer Magazine, a magazine that I have a subscription to, and even though there were several articles that I enjoyed, one particularly caught my attention and prompted me to discuss it this week in my blog. 

Family lawyer magazine sat down with four private investigators, Nicholas Himonidis, Rob Kimmons, TJ Ward, and Joe Gill and asked them several questions that related the private investigation industry and the family law circuit. 

I have to say that there were some good questions asked to the investigators and the article made it apparent that family lawyers were becoming more involved with private investigators and vice-versa.

When I began thinking about this topic, many things came to mind such as how can a private investigator and his findings be beneficial to a family law attorney?  How can the evidence assist in producing certain outcomes in court? As I read further into the article, these (and many other questions I had) were answered. For example, Rob Kimmons discussed the use of vehicle tracking in cases. He talked about how tracking a vehicle can provide evidence that a parent is driving drunk (even with the kids in the car) and can help in determining infidelity in some cases. They also discussed "cloning a spouses hard drive", "surveillance", and "asset and income investigations"

After reading the article, I began to realize that there isn't much that one can hide anymore when it comes to family divorce and custody cases. By hiring a private investigator, many things can be discovered such as the drinking and driving I discussed earlier, finding hidden income, and the most popular requests from family attorneys to private investigators, background checks on new partners when custody issues are involved.

I realized that this new relationship between family attorneys and private investigators is another way in which family law is changing and progressing.  Tools like these can help us better understand cases and provide more solid and consistent rulings for our clients.

As an attorney, I know I have these tools available at my disposal should I need them. 

What do you think? Is using a private investigator something you'd recommend in most cases or just the worst of the worst? 

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