Welcome to our 50th blog! In each one we write, we try to help answer some of the questions that you may have with regards to a service you may need our help with. This is a question that we get many calls on – trying to find someone. When you are trying to locate someone that you have lost touch with, it’s never easy. But if you’ve lost touch with them in New York City, it’s almost impossible to do on your own. New York City has over 8,804,190 people living there. That does not include the people visiting, just those that live there. So it truly is like trying to find a needle in a haystack – or in this case, the entire field. That is why you should always begin with a Private Investigator when searching for someone’s whereabouts. You should also find a Private Investigator who is local that has strong experience in this area as well as great reviews. In the past two years alone we have more than doubled our reviews (all 5 Stars!) which places us in the top one-third for reviews in NYC.
There are many different reasons why you would need to locate someone that you have lost touch with. Here are some examples of just a few:
- The One That Got Away – You remember that girl you dated in high school? The one that checked off all the boxes in your heart? But you were young and stupid and when you moved with your family to Springfield Gardens, you lost touch. At first, you wrote or called, but those became further apart, and eventually, you just stopped. You were all caught up in what you were doing and lost touch altogether. Then many years later you met up with an old friend from the neighborhood and got to talking about high school. It brought back a flood of memories and now you want to reach out to see how she is doing. You aren’t sure how to begin. She doesn’t live at the same address anymore and you can’t remember her old phone number.
- The Deadbeat – You rented the second floor of your home to what appeared to be a dependable guy with a family back in September. On paper, he appeared to be a good tenant. He had a small auto repair business in Willets Point and gave you the first month’s rent and full security without a problem. But that was the last time he paid you. They have put you off for months and now it’s been six months of excuses until one night they all moved out and you haven’t seen or heard from them since. You need the new address to serve them legal papers to sue for the back rent.
- The Client Who’s Ship Just Came In – In many legal firms, it can take years before a case settles. Sometimes, when a client moves, they neglect to give their new contact information to their lawyer so that they can be reached in the future. They may have been in Little Neck but now you don’t know where they are. You’ve tried sending letters and they get returned because the forwarding has expired. You’ve tried calling, but the house phone has been disconnected and you didn’t have their cell number on file.
- The Heir To The Throne – Another time that legal firms may need to locate someone is when a client passes away and you need to track down the heirs to their estate. They usually have only an old address and name to go on and cannot get very far. We once had a case where the address was in Fort Totten (the heir was with the Army Reserves at the time and the client never updated it). Now they need to find her actual address in order to tell her that her “ship has just come in.”
- Bye-Bye Love – You are trying to find your ex in order to serve the divorce papers or to revisit their child support arrangements since you have not received payments from him in years and want to bring him back to court to get them. However, they have disappeared and you cannot find them to serve them with the papers. The last you heard they were working on a food truck near Central Park Manhattan off the books, but don’t know much else.
These are just a few examples of actual cases we have handled. I am proud to say that all of the above had successful outcomes. However, they all came at a different cost base. Cases like these are referred to as “Missing Persons Searches” and the cost depends on a few factors, the most important being the amount of information you have and the age of the information. This will have a direct impact on the cost. Here are some examples of the costs of locating someone:
- Your information is from 40 years ago in high school. You have her name, last known address, and birthday. You remember her parents’ names and that she had two siblings. This would be an hourly rate, with a cap of $1,000.
- You have all the information from their application – the last known address (within a year) and you have their driver’s license information and place of work as well as a cell number. This would be a flat rate of approximately $400, for example.
- You have all their information – social security number, date of birth, recent last known address and phone number, email, etc. This would be a flat rate of approximately $400.
- You have their full name, last known address, last known house phone number. The information is about 5 years old. This would be a flat rate of approximately $600.
So the best answer is to call us to discuss what information you have, how old it is, and also why you need the information. A big factor is if it is “commercial or non-commercial”. This is very important. If the information is for legal purposes (serving divorce papers or suing for back rent for example) then we are legally able to provide the information to you without the subject’s permission. We go into several restricted databases (that we are cleared to access and the general public is not) for such information, as well as deep web searches. However, if it is not for a legal reason, such as contacting an old friend, then it is considered “non-commercial” and we would use the deep web and deep OSINT searching to locate them. In non-commercial situations, once we locate the subject, we would need to obtain permission from them in order to provide you with their contact information. If this is the case, and they say “no,” then as a courtesy we will deliver a letter from you to the person so that you may discuss your reason for wanting to contact them. So if nothing else, you will still be able to convey your reasons for wanting to get in touch.
But as far as the cost, the best piece of advice is to call us to discuss the situation. Every situation is a little different. We can give you a more definitive price in most cases once we know what information you have. We have had many, many successes in this area – it is one of our specialties – and we enjoy helping people find who they are searching for. We hope to hear from you soon and we look forward to helping you.
Investigreat, LLC is a recognized full service Private Investigation Agency that is fully licensed, insured and bonded, handling cases in Queens NY, Brooklyn NY, Bronx NY, New York City, Staten Island and Long Island NY and all over Connecticut. Terri Dornfeld along with her husband, Adam have been working cases for Legal Teams, Insurance Companies, Private Businesses, Municipalities, School Systems and general investigation services for the public since 1992.
Investigreat, LLC | Private Investigators serving Jamaica NY, Brooklyn NY, Queens NY, Connecticut | Office: 718-412-1845 | Text: 718-309-1269