Guidelines to Follow When Conducting Family Law Investigation

Family Law Ottawa

A common misconception in matters of family law investigations is that people can investigate their spouse with similar diligence as that of a professional private investigator.

It is advisable to have a private investigator. However, there are a number of things that the average person can perform to help in the conduct of investigations to save both money and time. Remember that AGB Lawyers in Ottawa will not know much about your spouse as you already know.

An ordinary person is limited to carrying out the preliminary background investigation. After gathering the information assuming that you know your spouse very well, it is then passed to the private investigator to verify and thereafter supplement with his findings. Any further investigation beyond the background stage is in the ambit of the investigator since you may risk getting harassment or stalking charges for incorrect surveillance on your spouse.

The following are the dos and don’ts when carrying out a family law investigation.


  • Keep any good photos of the person to be investigated and provide them to the private investigator when necessary.
  • Compile a list of important information such as your spouse’s full name, current address, nicknames and aliases, former address, their current phone numbers, date of birth, license plates of their vehicles including ATVs and trailers, current and former employers, their hobbies and places they frequently visit, dates of vacations that they have taken, and even their email addresses.


  • Contact your spouse’s workplace to inquire about their conduct or their income
  • Follow your spouse around. Only do so if you are legally licensed or permitted to follow them.
  • Attempt to record or record the phone calls of your spouse or conversations that you were not a party to.
  • Access locked email accounts, social media accounts, websites and their Apple ID’s.
  • Try to obtain the medical and bank records of your spouse
  • Receive and read your spouse’s mail
  • Place a GPS tracker on your spouse or on your spouse’s vehicle.

In the scenario that you hire an investigator:

  • Always listen carefully and note down all that the AGB Lawyers requests you to provide.
  • Provide the requested information in detail and ensure that you double check it to make sure it is correct before handing it over to the investigator. Check for misspelled names and incorrect street and road names and direction.
  • After the investigator has commenced working and has provided the requested information, avoid contact with them except when furnishing them with up to date information when you become aware of it.
  • Avoid repeatedly asking for updates which at times distracts the investigator and even leads to the discussion about the change of requirements. It is equally important that you avoid talking about the fact that you have hired a private investigator until the matter is fully resolved.

In conclusion, the personal habits or details of a spouse may seem insignificant but can entirely change how the AGB Lawyers approaches the investigation. Keep track of as much information as possible and passing it over to the AGB Lawyers. It makes a huge difference to the end result and total costs of the investigation.