Is it legal to hire a private investigator to obtain information on the plaintiff for a civil suit I have coming up example photographs videos any other information that could be helpful

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Asked on March 26, 2016 under Criminal Law, South Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Hiring a private investigator is legal. Of course, that doesn't mean that everything the P.I. does or might do would be legal. For example, he can film/photograph the plaintiff in public areas legally; he can't break into the plaintiff's home or email account, however. But as long as each act the P.I. does is itself legal, you can hire an experienced P.I. to do it for you. Note that to use the documentation or information, however, the P.I. will have to take the stand at trial--only a person with "personal knowledge" as to where photos were taken, etc. can introduce them or testify as to them.

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