How To Get a Private Investigator License in New York


This article provides an overview of how to get a private investigator license in New York. In addition, it includes recommendations for joining an industry association and finding training and education resources.

New York Private Investigator Licensing Requirements

Private Investigator licensing in New York is handled by the New York Department of State Division of Licensing Services. For additional information, see the New York State Law governing private investigators. Visit the website to get the most up-to-date information, get advice on licensing requirements, download applications and forms, learn about the rules and laws that govern private investigators, and more.

Licensing Authority Contact Information

New York Department of State Division of Licensing Services
Department of State, Albany Location:
One Commerce Plaza, 99 Washington Ave
Albany, NY 12231-0001

Department of State, New York City Location:
123 William Street, New York, NY 10038-3804
Phone: (518) 474-4429
Fax: (518) 473-6648

General Licensing Requirements

The following is general licensing information. Please visit the website above for specific licensing information, application forms, insurance requirements, fees, and special licensing requirements.

  • Provide character references
  • Bonding ($10,000 surety bond)
  • Provide Proof of Training/Experience
  • Personal Background Information
  • Proof of liability insurance (if employing security guards)
  • Applicant must be at least 25 years of age
  • Electronic Fingerprints

Please visit the New York State Business Express website for more detailed information, requirements, forms, and fees. Search for the keyword “private investigator” and review the results.

Other special licensing requirements such as education requirements, experience requirements, examinations, and insurance may be required. Check the state licensing website for more information.

Also, buy the Private Investigator’s Licensing eBook at Amazon for just $3.69.

New York Private Investigator Associations

Once you have a license, we recommend joining a private investigator industry association. The most popular association in New York is the Associated Licensed Detectives of New York State (ALDONYS).

ALDONYS was founded in 1950 as a not-for-profit industry membership association. ALDONYS is the largest New York State organization solely representing the interests of licensed private investigators and watch, guard, and patrol agencies.

Find a Job

If you’re looking for a job, view our list of Private Investigators Investigation Agencies in New York.

Also, many open positions are posted on popular job boards and search engines such as,, and ZipRecruiter. Also, I highly recommend using LinkedIn as a part of your job search.

Additional Information

Training Resources – Improve your chances of getting licensed by completing a private investigator degree program, training course, or home study course. Learn what options are available to get the investigative knowledge necessary to get licensed.

Michael Kissiah is the owner of Brandy Lane Publishing, LLC, which owns and operates a small portfolio of websites, including Michael created more than 20 years ago after working as a private investigator in the state of Florida. Since that time, he has become an expert at how to find information online and has written over 1000 articles on topics related to the investigation industry. In addition, he is the author of the "Private Investigator Licensing Handbook", available at


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