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H.B. 217 Enrolled
This act modifies the Public Safety Code by providing that the Bureau of Criminal
Identification will issue private investigator licenses within a specified number of days,
and that the Private Investigator Hearing and Licensure Board will hear appeals from
the bureau's decisions, rather than issuing the licenses. The act amends the definition of
direct supervision. The act also allows the board to consider mitigating circumstances
when reviewing the applicant's good moral character. This act takes effect on July 1,
This act affects sections of Utah Code Annotated 1953 as follows:
53-9-102, as last amended by Chapter 212, Laws of Utah 1998
53-9-103, as last amended by Chapter 212, Laws of Utah 1998
53-9-105, as last amended by Chapter 212, Laws of Utah 1998
53-9-106, as enacted by Chapter 314, Laws of Utah 1995
53-9-108, as last amended by Chapter 212, Laws of Utah 1998
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
Section 1. Section 53-9-102 is amended to read:
In this chapter, unless otherwise stated:
(1) "Adequate records" means records containing, at a minimum, sufficient information
to identify the client, the dates of service, the fee for service, the payments for service, the type
of service given, and copies of any reports that may have been made.
(2) "Advertising" means the submission of bids, contracting or making known by any
public notice, publication, or solicitation of business, directly or indirectly, that services
regulated under this chapter are available for consideration.
(3) "Agency" means a person who holds an agency license pursuant to this chapter, and
includes one who employs an individual for wages and salary, and withholds all legally required
deductions and contributions, or contracts with a registrant or an apprentice on a part-time or
case-by-case basis to conduct an investigation on behalf of the agency.
(4) "Applicant" means any person who has submitted a completed application and all
(5) "Apprentice" means a person who holds an apprentice license pursuant to this
chapter, has not met the requirements for registration, and works under the direct supervision and
guidance of an agency.
(6) "Board" means the Private Investigator Hearing and Licensure Board created in
Section 53-9-104 .
(7) "Bureau" means the Bureau of Criminal Identification created in Section 53-10-201 .
resulting from trial or plea, including a plea of no contest, regardless of whether the imposition of
sentence was suspended.
(a) is responsible for, and authorizes, the type and extent of work assigned;
(b) reviews and approves all work produced by the apprentice before it goes to the client;
(c) closely supervises and provides direction and guidance to the apprentice in the
performance of his assigned work; and
(d) is immediately available to the apprentice for verbal contact, including by electronic
revocation, suspension, or probation in order to protect the public health, safety, or welfare.
is listed on the agency's or employer's payroll records, and is under the agency's or employer's
direction and control. An employee is not an independent contractor.
applicant for an agency, registrant, or apprentice license.
there is insufficient evidence to support probation, suspension, or revocation of a license, the
department informs the licensee of the need to modify or eliminate certain practices and that
continuation of the activities that led to the information being submitted to the department may
result in further disciplinary action against the licensee.
license is issued by the department.
collection agencies and credit reporting agencies, who, for consideration, engages in business or
accepts employment to conduct any investigation for the purpose of obtaining information with
(i) crime, wrongful acts, or threats against the United States or any state or territory of the
(ii) the identity, reputation, character, habits, conduct, business occupation, honesty,
integrity, credibility, knowledge, trustworthiness, efficiency, loyalty, activity, movements,
whereabouts, affiliations, associations, or transactions of any person or group of persons;
(iii) the credibility of witnesses or other persons;
(iv) the whereabouts of missing persons or owners of abandoned property;
(v) the causes and origin of, or responsibility for a fire, libel, slander, a loss, an accident,
damage, or an injury to real or personal property;
(vi) the business of securing evidence to be used before investigating committees or
boards of award or arbitration or in the trial of civil or criminal cases and the trial preparation;
(vii) the prevention, detection, and removal of installed devices for eavesdropping or
(viii) the business of "skip tracing" persons who have become delinquent in their lawful
debts, either when hired by an individual, collection agency, or through the direct purchase of the
debt from a financial institution or entity owning the debt or judgment; or
(ix) serving civil process.
(b) "Private investigator or private detective" does not include:
(i) any person or employee conducting an investigation on the person's or employee's
own behalf or on behalf of the employer if the employer is not a private investigator under this
(ii) an employee of an attorney licensed to practice law in this state.
chapter for a private investigator license.
chapter. The registrant performs private investigative work either as an employee on an
employer's payroll or, on a contract with an agency, part-time, or case-by-case basis, with a
minimum amount of direction.
(a) engaging or offering to engage by fraud or misrepresentation in any activities
regulated by this chapter;
(b) aiding or abetting a person who is not licensed pursuant to this chapter in
representing that person as a private investigator or registrant in this state;
(c) gross negligence in the practice of a private investigator or registrant;
(d) failing or refusing to maintain adequate records and investigative findings on a
subject of investigation or a client;
(e) committing a felony or a misdemeanor involving any crime that is grounds for denial,
suspension, or revocation of an agency, registrant, or apprentice license. In all cases, conviction
by a court of competent jurisdiction or a plea of no contest is conclusive evidence of the
commission of the crime; or
(f) making a fraudulent or untrue statement to the bureau, board, department, or its
investigators, staff, or consultants.
Section 2. Section 53-9-103 is amended to read:
53-9-103. Commissioner of Public Safety to administer -- Bureau to issue licenses --
Records -- Bonds -- Rulemaking.
(1) The commissioner of the Department of Public Safety shall administer this chapter.
(2) (a) The bureau, acting at the direction of the commissioner, shall issue a private
investigator license to any applicant who meets qualifications for licensure under Section
(b) The bureau shall issue the license to a qualified applicant within five business days of
receipt of the application.
has been issued for each application and bond.
(4) If a license is revoked, suspended, canceled, or denied or if a licensee is placed on
probation, the date of filing the order for revocation, suspension, cancellation, denial, or
probation shall be included in the records.
(5) The [
license revoked, suspended, placed on probation, or canceled and a written record of complaints
filed against licensees.
(6) The commissioner may make rules in accordance with Title 63, Chapter 46a, Utah
Administrative Rulemaking Act, necessary to administer this chapter.
Section 3. Section 53-9-105 is amended to read:
53-9-105. Powers and duties of the board.
(1) The board shall:
(a) review all applications for licenses and renewals of licenses for private investigators
and make recommendations to the commissioner for approval or disapproval; [
(b) upon receiving a timely filed petition, review within a reasonable time the denial,
suspension, or revocation of a private investigator license; and
regarding disciplinary action.
(2) The board may take and hear evidence, administer oaths and affirmations, and
compel by subpoena the attendance of witnesses and the production of books, papers, records,
documents, and other information relating to a formal complaint against or department
investigation of a private investigator.
Section 4. Section 53-9-106 is amended to read:
53-9-106. Meetings -- Hearings.
(1) The board shall meet quarterly, unless the board has no business to conduct during
that quarter, and shall also meet at the call of the chair[
(2) A quorum consists of three members.
(3) If a member has three unexcused absences within a 12-month period, the board may
hold a hearing to determine if that board member should be released from board duties.
Section 5. Section 53-9-108 is amended to read:
53-9-108. Qualifications for licensure.
(1) (a) An applicant for an agency license under this chapter shall be at least 21 years of
age, a citizen or legal resident of the United States, and of good moral character.
(b) An applicant may not have been:
(i) convicted of a felony;
(ii) convicted of any act involving illegally using, carrying, or possessing a dangerous
(iii) convicted of any act of personal violence or force on any person or convicted of
threatening to commit any act of personal violence or force against another person;
(iv) convicted of any act constituting dishonesty or fraud;
(v) convicted of any act involving moral turpitude;
(vi) placed on probation or parole;
(vii) named in an outstanding arrest warrant; or
(viii) convicted of illegally obtaining or disclosing private, controlled, or protected
records as provided in Section 63-2-801 .
(c) In assessing good moral character under Subsection (1)(b), the board shall consider
any mitigating circumstances presented by an applicant regarding information under Subsections
shall be in good standing within that state or jurisdiction.
investigative experience that consists of actual work performed as a private investigator for a
private agency, the federal government, or a state, county, or municipal government.
experience claimed as years of qualifying experience and provide the exact details as to the
character and nature of the experience on a form prescribed by the department and certified by
the applicant's employers.
(ii) If the applicant is unable to supply written certification from an employer in whole or
in part, the applicant may offer written certification from persons other than an employer
covering the same subject matter for consideration by the board.
(iii) The applicant shall prove completion of the required experience to the satisfaction of
the board and the board may independently verify any certification offered on behalf of the
(2) (a) An applicant for a registrant license shall meet all qualification standards of this
section, except Subsection (1)(d). An applicant shall have a minimum of one year, or 1,000
hours, of investigative experience that consists of actual work performed as a private investigator
for a private agency, the federal government, a state, county, or municipal government.
(b) A licensed registrant shall only work as an employee of, or an independent contractor
with, licensed agencies as provided in Subsection 53-9-102 [
(i) advertise his services or conduct investigations for the general public; or
(ii) employ other private investigators or hire them as independent contractors.
(3) (a) An applicant for an apprentice license, lacking the experience required for a
registrant license, shall meet all of the qualification standards in Subsection (1), except
Subsection (1)(d) and complete an apprentice application.
(b) An apprentice shall work under the direct supervision and guidance of a licensed
agency, full-time for one year, or 1,000 hours, prior to eligibility for a registrant license. A
licensed apprentice shall only work under the direction of a licensed agency as provided in
Subsection 53-9-102 (5), and may not:
(i) advertise his services or conduct investigations for the general public; or
(ii) employ other private investigators.
(4) (a) An applicant for an agency, registrant, or apprentice license may be eligible for a
license without meeting all or part of the investigative work experience required by this section if
(i) has a criminal justice degree from an accredited college or university;
(ii) is certified by Peace Officer Standards and Training; or
(iii) can substantiate other similar law enforcement or investigative training in the areas
set forth in Subsection 53-9-102 [
(b) The board shall determine whether or not training may replace the work experience
requirement and to what extent.
Section 6. Effective date.
This act takes effect on July 1, 2003.
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