How to Become a Private Investigator in North Carolina


The North Carolina Private Protective Services Board governs all private investigators, requires that each private investigator be licensed and maintain compliance with North Carolina law (Private Protective Services N.C.G.S. 74-C and the Board’s Administrative Rules and Regulations under 12 N.C.A.C. 7D). A North Carolina Private Investigator’s license is valid for two years.

General Requirements (in summary)
1. Be at least 18 years of age
2. Have high school diploma or equivalent
3. Be a United States citizen or resident alien
4. Be of good moral character with no criminal record
5. Three (3) years of verifiable experience in private investigative work
a. Licensee shall receive 400 hours of experience for associate’s degree
b. Licensee shall receive 800 hours of experience for bachelor’s degree
c. Licensee shall receive 1,200 hours of experience for graduate degree
NOTE: The Board can grant up to 100, 200 or 300 hours of additional hours, respectively, if the applicant can provide proof that private protective services industry course work was received while obtaining degree.
$150 non-refundable application fee
$250 annual fee for new and renewal license
$100 license transfer fee
$38 fee for SBI/FBI fingerprint check

Learn How to Become a Private Investigator

The State of North Carolina has reciprocity agreements with several states. These agreements allow the licensed private investigator to operate in the particular state for a maximum of 30 days, except for Tennessee, which is 15 days. As of 2011, North Carolina has reciprocity agreements with California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. Refer to North Carolina’s current reciprocity agreement for specific detail.
Continuing Education
The North Carolina Private Protective Security Board requires 12 hours of continuing education. Up to six (6) hours can be obtained on-line. Continuing education requirements are required prior to license renewal and must be completed every two years.

Private Protective Services
1631 Midtown Place, Suite 104
Raleigh, NC 27609
Telephone: (919) 875-3611
Fax: (919) 875-3609