#DearFindLaw: Private Investigators, Last Minute Bar Review

By William Peacock, Esq. on July 25, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

It's Friday @FindLawLP and we got perhaps the most random question we could've imagined, regarding the use of private detectives in legal practice. In other oddities, with less than a week until the bar exam, we've had a flood of panic-stricken test takers flooding to our site.

Bar exam and private dicks. That's what's on tap for #DearFindLaw, our weekly advice column for young attorneys, procrastinating bar examinees, and apparently, private detectives. And if you have a question for next week's column, you can find me on Twitter @PeacockEsq.

Going solo out of school? Spend more time developing practice skills and leave the marketing work for the experts.

Let's Start With the Bar

Seriously folks: though we always encourage you to read our blogs, we're a bit surprised that with less than a week to go, y'all are all about our Bar Study posts. Take a look at our top five posts for the week: the top three are bar-related.

Well, we don't have anymore inspirational quotes, but I would suggest this song: "Go Hard." Or if that's not your type of hype music, "Victory" by Diddy and Biggie is sure to get you pumped.

As for last-minute tips? It may be a bit too late for a true cram session, even with a "100 Hour" plan, but reviewing your outlines for some last minute black letter law memorization can't hurt. Otherwise, our best tip is to chill out at least one day before the test -- go in calm, relaxed, and ready to dominate.

Private Detectives

One of FindLawLP's Facebook friends asks, "How do I select a Private Investigator? Beside investigating crime scenes or interviewing witnesses. How can a private investigator add value to a firm?"

It's an interestingly phrased question, considering his Facebook profile indicates that he, himself, is a private detective. But we'll bite.

How can a private investigator add value to a firm? Off the top of my head: family law, witness investigation, and asset investigation. For family law, character, lifestyle, and assets are always at issue -- affairs and drug use can affect child support, alimony, and custody rulings. And divorce is all about fighting over assets and custody.

Outside of family law, anything involving enforcing a judgment (civil lawsuits) or bankruptcy cases where companies are hiding assets, would be situations where a private detective skilled in asset investigations might come in handy.

Finally, perhaps a firm might need to do some background checking on a witness? The ethics of digging into a witness's personal life are beyond the scope of this column, but if a lawyer wanted to avoid surprises from his own witness, or wanted to question the credibility of the other side's witnesses, a private detective might be a good place to look.

As for finding a private detective, we have a pretty sizable directory for "legal investigators." A Google search turns up a ton of alternatives as well.

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