By Ryan Ross
Ross Investigators, P.C.
Colorado has added about 327 licensed private investigators since PIs were required to obtain licenses last year and figures obtained from the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) show it is the third smallest among those regulated by the State of Colorado.
State regulators issued 327 licenses to private investigators since the licensing requirement went into effect June 1, 2015. Add that to the 337 licenses issued before the licensing became mandatory and that’s about 660 licenses, 580 of which are active.
Those numbers are higher than the projections made by legislative analysts while the licensing program was being considered in 2014. Those analysts predicting only 400 licenses would be issued and only $136,000 of revenue would be generated.
The good news for private investigators is that the licensing program is on solid financial footing. At $262 per license, the program generated about $153,000 during the most recent fiscal year, which is about 11 percent more than projections. The current licensing renewal fee is $276.
These numbers are small, compared to other Colorado professions. In fact, only two other DORA regulated professions in Colorado have numbers this small: mid-wives (330) and naturopathic doctors (133). In the later cases, Coloradans’ lives and well-being can be damaged by unscrupulous or poorly-trained professionals. The damages created by unlicensed investigators aren’t as clear.
Colorado issues licenses for 37 professions and services. Including all license types, there are two others that are smaller than the investigators: ski lifts (563) and funeral homes and crematoriums (359).
The figures for investigators show predictable renewal rates. Of the 257 level 2 investigators who obtained licenses prior to last year’s June 1st deadline, all but seven percent renewed. Of the 80 level 1 investigators who did, 20 percent did not renew.
One licensee had his license suspended because of a failure to pay child-support. No licenses have been revoked by regulators.
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