Training for the profession of private investigator

Education and Training to Become a Private Investigator

What is a Private Investigator in France?

The role of a private investigator is a regulated profession.

The definition of a private investigator is outlined in article L621-1 of the French Internal Security Code:

“The liberal profession, in which a person gathers information or intelligence for third parties, often discreetly and without revealing their identity or the purpose of their mission, is subject to the provisions of this title. This work is undertaken with the aim of protecting the interests of clients.”

The investigator’s task involves obtaining information and evidence, especially pertinent in civil and commercial legal cases, to advocate for their clients’ interests.

In France, a private investigator’s activities are associated with security professions, and they are regarded as integral contributors to the effectiveness of defense rights.

The Various Areas of Expertise for Private Investigators Covered in Our Training Programs

Investigation services for:
Corporate Intelligence
Commercial Investigations
Financial Investigations
Family-related Investigations

Private Investigator Education and Training

To pursue a career as a private investigator, one must obtain one of the following qualifications or diplomas:

  • CQP d’enquêteur salarié (requiring baccalaureate as a prerequisite);
  • Certified title of detective, private research agent – Manager of Investigations and Private Research Operations (requiring a Bac +2 level as a prerequisite). This certification is essential for roles such as agency manager, freelance collaborator, or employed investigator;
  • Licence de Droit (law degree) with a specialization in private investigation, offered by the Universities of Nîmes and Panthéon-Assas.

Training in a Recognized Private Investigation Agency

Theoretical training is complemented by internships in established private investigation agencies, which are essential for validating the course. Securing an internship is a crucial step. We recommend seeking agencies with physical offices (not just registered addresses) to gain practical experience.
Consider securing an internship even before starting your training, as opportunities are limited and agencies often accept only a few interns annually.

Private Investigator Training Courses in France


Institut de Formation des Agents de Recherches
12, boulevard Ledru Rollin
B.P. 50148
34 003 Montpellier CEDEX 1
04 67 58 30 65

Renowned as one of France’s most prestigious training institutes, we offer an extensive range of courses for aspiring private investigators:

“Manager of Investigations and Private Research Operations” Training Course

This comprehensive course spans 1200 hours, including:

  • 700 hours of classroom training at the center (from September to March annually)
  • 500 hours of practical on-the-job training (from March to July), at 35 hours per week

The TITRE program is tailored for those with a Bac +2 level of education (including those with legal experience). Course prerequisites include:

  • A valid driving license and a personal vehicle
  • A clean criminal record
  • Good physical health
  • A training authorization from the CNAPS

Candidates with proven military professional experience may also apply, subject to selection interviews.

CQP “Salaried Investigator – Research Agent” Training

The CQP training course encompasses 640 hours, broken down as follows:

  • 360 hours of theoretical instruction at the training center (from October to January annually)
  • 280 hours of practical on-the-job training (from February to March), at a rate of 35 hours per week

Note: This course does not offer correspondence or e-learning options. It is open to individuals who have completed their Bac. The prerequisites for this course are the same as the TITRE program.

MAC: Mandatory continuing education for private investigators
VAE- VALIDATION DES ACQUIS DE L’EXPERIENCE (OPJ/APJ / Militaires or other profiles able to demonstrate professional experience)
Preparatory training (for specific profiles) / E-Learning


Ecole Supérieure des Agents de Recherches Privées
55 Avenue MARCEAU
75116 Paris, France

0 806 800 526


“Responsable d’investigations et d’opérations de recherches privées” (Manager of private investigations and research operations)


“salarié détective – agent de recherches” training course


Training scheme similar to that ofIFAR, based on the same professional and certification reference framework

  • Obligatory points to follow the training :
    • Driving license and personal vehicle
    • A clean criminal record
    • Training authorization issued by the CNAPS


University of Nîmes
Rue du Docteur Georges Salan CS 13019
30021 Nîmes Cedex 1

33 466 36 46 46

Partner: Institut de formation des Agents de Recherches (I.F.A.R.).

  • Obligatory points to follow the training :
    • Driving license and personal vehicle
    • A clean criminal record
    • Training authorization issued by the CNAPS

Licence professionnelle Sécurité des biens et des personnes course Activité juridique, directeur d’enquêtes privées

University of Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas
Center de formation permanente
4 rue Blaise Desgoffe
75006 Paris

33 (0)1 53 63 86 26

Teaching location: MELUN

  • Prerequisites for the course :
    • Driving license and personal vehicle
    • A clean criminal record
    • Good physical condition
    • Authorization to enter training issued by the CNAPS
UXAM, a leading private investigation company in France.
Our team of over thirty private investigators and consultants operates both nationally and internationally.
We continually seek dynamic professionals to expand our diverse departments.
For more information about joining our team, click here.

Charting Your Path to Becoming a Private Investigator

Consider your business objectives and the professional role you aspire to:

Manager of a Private Investigation Agency

With appropriate training, you can establish your own private investigation agency, independently or in partnership. You’ll have full control over the agency’s management, client selection, and service offerings. However, initial investment is significant, particularly in competitive markets. Networking with professionals in the field and offering subcontracted services can ensure a stable initial revenue. Joining a network like UXAM provides support, quick integration into a proven business model, and enhanced online visibility.

Key investments include a reliable vehicle for surveillance, a high-quality smartphone with an excellent camera, digital camera, laptop, and specialized surveillance equipment such as discreet cameras.

Salaried Private Investigator

Entry-level status in this field is often as a salaried private investigator, with the CQP Enquêteur as a foundational qualification. The TITRE de Responsable d’Investigations et d’Opérations de Recherches Privées offers broader prospects.

However, securing a salaried position in an agency can be challenging. The nature of the work often complicates employment due to the demands of mission management, hour tracking, and rest periods. It’s important to be aware that opportunities for salaried positions are limited in this field.

We are engaged in the following private investigations:

Corporate Investigations

Family-Related Investigations

Financial Investigations

Insurance Investigations

  • Claim Verification Services
  • Insurance Fraud Investigations
  • Compensation Invoice Auditing

Civil Investigations

Private Investigation Agency – N° AUT-069-2114-05-26-201504836622


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