Do you do "No Find, No Fee"?

I regret we don’t do No Find No Fee because such inquiries don’t just involve our time and written report, we often have costs from using subscription databases to which the public don’t have access. Whilst we cannot give guarantees to find someone, our Testimonials speak for themselves, especially one of our earliest articles entitled: Relatives Found With Only A Few Clues.  The vast majority of our Missing Person cases are solved within two business days.

Do I call the Police or Pathfinder?

If you suspect that a missing person (misper) is in imminent danger of suffering or causing death or serious injury to themselves or others and they are not responding to attempts to contact them, then please call the Police on 000. For example:

  • They have gone hiking, rock-climbing, fishing or flying a light aircraft and have not returned on time
  • They are in an area subject to inclement conditions eg floods, cyclones, bushfires or extreme heat
  • They have a medical condition such as diabetes, angina, epilepsy, asthma or Alzheimer’s
  • There is a history of causing or suffering domestic violence
  • They have recently been seriously threatened by someone eg loan shark, drug dealer or jealous husband/wife
  • There is reason to suspect that they may have been abducted or assaulted by drug dealers, sex offenders or loan sharks
  • They use street drugs e.g. crystal meth or marijuana, etc.
  • They have a recent history of attempting to commit suicide or have expressed a desire to do so
  • They have mental health condition such as paranoid schizophrenia
  • They have made serious threats of injury to another person
  • They are a Registered Sex Offender
  • They are currently on bail for a serious offence and you have reason to believe that they may harm a witness or flee the country
  • They are a child under 10 years.
  • They are a child under 18 years or a vulnerable adult at risk of Sexual Exploitation.

If you have concerns that someone is at risk as above, but you are not quite sure, then call the Police on 131 444.

There is no need to wait 24 hours before making the call, that’s a Hollywood myth!

Examples Where Pathfinder Investigations Can Help

  • My brother went missing in 2006. The Police did an investigation, but we still have lots of questions about what happened to him. Pathfinder Investigations have persuaded the Police to release their Missing Person Report so that we can cross check the details. The Police have agreed in principal to re-open the investigation if we establish new lines of inquiry. This cold case investigation is currently ongoing. Please see our Missing Person Appeals
  • We live in England and we lost touch with a relative who emigrated to Australia and has now become a beneficiary of a Will. How do we go about finding them, please? Pathfinder Investigations tracked the relative from England to Perth to a rural location in WA, visited them in person to explain the situation and persuaded them to phone home. They have now come into a small inheritance and have resumed a relationship with the client. Please see “Healing from Family Rifts” in our Recommended Books/Films
  • I had a teenage pregnancy which ended in my giving birth to a son, who is now an adult. The Father had left me during the pregnancy and my son has never met him. I would like to find the Father so as my son can meet his other family. I do have some information regarding the Father….Can you help me? Yes, Pathfinder Investigations may be able to trace the father dependent on how much information is available. We can also discreetly approach the father and ask him if he would like to meet his son as a stepping stone to forming a relationship. If the father has any doubts about his paternity, we can also provide him with a DNA test.

How do I start a Missing Person investigation with Pathfinder?

Don’t know where to start? Don’t know which direction to go in? We can help you to find your loved one.

  • We offer a Free 20 Minute Consultation with a qualified licensed investigator, Jan Ross, who will discuss the case with you via phone, Skype, or email.
  • An invoice will be generated comprising fees we incur to access subscription websites, up to two hours’ work for us to analyse the Misper (Missing Person) Report, devise lines of inquiry, commence the research and provide a written report. For private clients, the investigation will commence once this is paid by EFT (our preferred method) or credit card, while solicitors are given 7 day terms.
  • We will supply you with a Misper Report for you to complete in Word format and ask you to email it to us at jan@pfinv.com.au together with some recent photographs of the misper, which show their facial features clearly.
  • Most mispers will be found fairly quickly, though please note that complex cases may take longer and incur additional cost eg for a national property ownership report. We cannot guarantee to find the person you are seeking because, for example, they may have left the country. If that is the case, we belong to the Council of International Investigators, so we may still be able to find them for you. Rest assured that we will do our utmost to reach a successful conclusion for you.

Why should I choose Pathfinder?

Jan Ross served almost 20 years loyal and exemplary service in the West Yorkshire Police in the UK. She specialised in tracing missing persons and, by instigating and teaching UK national policy on how to find Missing Persons, she had a 100% success rate in solving current cases over her last five years of service.

Jan was praised for her multi-agency work in preventing young people from going missing on a regular basis and becoming at risk of child sexual exploitation by Richard Bryan, who was the Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police and the Association of Chief Police Officers lead on Missing People.

In addition, Jan was awarded a Divisional Commander’s Commendation for her “tenacity, enthusiasm and commitment” in solving multiple crimes, traits which have carried over into her role as a private investigator.

Since migrating to Australia in 2010, she has acquired several Australian qualifications including Advanced Skip Tracing from the Private Investigators College of Australia in Brisbane.

Terms & Conditions

Adopted Children

We may be able to help you find your child provided you can give us the name of the Adoption Agency and formal permission to contact them. Whilst we cannot provide a mediation service ourselves, we recommend a book entitled “Healing from Family Rifts” available through our Recommended Books/Films page prior to starting this process.

Appeal For Information

Some clients have been looking for their loved ones for a long time before they come to Pathfinder Investigations for help, and complex cases can be particularly challenging. At any time in the investigation, clients may opt to put out an Appeal For Information. We offer to write a summary of the circumstances together with photographs of the Missing Person and put the Appeal on our Missing Person Appeals page as well as our Facebook page free of charge. Our appeals remain on our sites until you ask us to take them down.

Area Covered

We are based in Perth and we can make Field Calls anywhere in Western Australia and, of course, all internet, email and telephone inquires can be made worldwide. For Process Serving we cover the Greater Perth Area where the first 100Km of travel are free, however, we belong to a National Network of Private Investigators and Process Servers across Australia and have a further 606 contacts in 154 countries, so Contact Us for a quote today.

Cheating Partners

We can serve Divorce and Custody papers for you – see Process Serving, but we no longer conduct surveillance because the Family Law Act 1975 established the principle of no-fault divorce in Australian Law. When granting a divorce the Court does not consider why the marriage ended. The only grounds for divorce are that the marriage has irretrievably broken down and that the parties have been separated for at least one year.

Children 

With the exception of Adopted Children and Cold Case Reviews, all cases of missing children should be dealt with by the Police in the first instance.

Code of Conduct

WA Security Industry Code of Conduct

Cold Case Reviews

Where the Police have conducted an initial investigation but made no progress for some time, Pathfinder Investigations will review the case for you, though this will be dependent on how much information is forthcoming from the current investigating officer. New leads can sometimes open up, for example, a witness who was in a relationship at the time of the disappearance may now be prepared to divulge information, or new databases may become available to us. Please be aware it may take some time to get the file from the Police.

Confidentiality

Pathfinder Investigations adheres to Australian Privacy Principles . Inquiries will be conducted with sensitivity according to the situation. They will also be conducted in an honest manner by declaring at the outset who we are and on whose behalf we are making inquiries, as it is against the WA Security Industry Code of Conduct to give false or misleading information. If we receive information from someone who does not wish to be identified, then we will respect their wishes and endeavour to find corroborative evidence by some other means. The information collated by Pathfinder will be stored securely. It will be divulged only to the client, unless information comes to light which gives us reasonable grounds to believe that the misper is at risk of causing  significant harm to themselves or others, or of committing a serious crime, in which case the  investigation will cease and a copy of the report will be passed to the Police. In such circumstances, the client will still be liable for costs up to the point where the case is handed over to the Police.

Corroborative Evidence

Where we receive unsure or anonymous information from one source, it will be double-checked through a different source to ensure this information is as accurate as possible.

Counselling

We understand that waiting for news about your Loved One is very stressful, and that lack of closure can be as devastating as bereavement itself. Similarly, when a person who has deliberately distanced themselves from their family is found, or a biological parent or adopted child does not want the same kind of relationship as the client, this can be very upsetting. Pathfinder Investigations is aiming to provide an holistic counselling service to our clients.

Debt Collection

Pathfinder Investigations is not a Registered Debt Collector, though we can serve a General Procedure Claim, Minor Case Claim, Means Inquiry Summons, Default Judgment in a Mortgage Action, Creditor’s Statutory Demand for Payment of Debt, or a Writ of Summons for you. Please see Process Serving for more information.

Disbursements

Official documents such as Certificates of Title, Tenancy Reports, ASIC reports, etc. incur fees which are covered in our Minimum Fee for finding Missing Persons and Beneficiaries.

Discount for Regular Clients

A 10% Loyal Customer Discount applies to corporate clients who are not in arrears.

Due Diligence Field Calls

It is so easy for people and businesses to present themselves in a fraudulent manner online. Let us put your mind at rest by conducting inquiries with them in person on your behalf. This service is especially valuable to clients in the eastern states or overseas. Please contact us for a quote.

Feedback

Feedback about our service is always welcomed. If there is any aspect which is less than satisfactory, please inform us immediately so that any remedial action can be taken as a matter of urgency. If you are delighted with our service, then please feel free to provide us with a Testimonial and mention your experience to your friends, because we pride ourselves on word-of-mouth referrals.

Field Call

A visit to a specific address or area where inquiries can be made in person eg making house-to-house inquiries. Please also see Due Diligence Field Calls and Travel Costs.

Free Consultation

We can provide you with a free 20 minute consultation via phone, Skype or email, so that we can discuss the background to your Missing Person case in detail and answer any questions you may have.

GST

Goods and Services Tax is calculated at 10%.

Guarantee

The industry standard for finding Missing Persons is 60-80%. Our investigators were trained by a company which has a success rate of 80-100%. However, Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd cannot give any guarantees that they will find the person you are seeking because, for example, they may have left the country and we don’t know which area of another country they have gone even though we do have 606 contacts in 154 countries. All we can promise is to use our investigative skills and experience to the very best of our ability.

Infidelity

Please see Cheating Partners.

Inquiry Agent

Jan Ross, Managing Director of Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd, holds an Inquiry Agent licence in her married name of Janine Smeulders issued by WAPOL ensuring that we understand our obligations under the Security & Related Activities (Control) Act 1996 and the Security & Related Activities (Control) Regulations 1997. Such licences are regularly reviewed by law.

Investigator

A subcontractor who has passed Certificate III in Investigative Services and/or Certificate IV Government (Fraud Control), who is licensed by the Western Australian Police to conduct inquiries and holds their own Inquiry Agent Licence. Criminal history checks here in Australia and, if necessary, in the investigator’s country of origin are conducted as part of the vetting process.

Legal Advice

Clients are advised to seek independent professional legal advice in all Court matters. For those who cannot afford a lawyer, please see “How to Run Your Own Court Case” on our Recommended Books/Films page.

Misper

A missing person.

Multiple Defendants

Where two or more Defendants or Respondents are served at the same place at the same time, the first will be charged at the full price while any others are charged at 75% discount. If repeated visits to the address(es) are necessary, these will all be charged at full price.

Payment Methods & Terms

Please pay your invoice by EFT (our preferred method) to: Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd,  BSB: 306-115,  Account No: 0425332.  We use BPoint instead of PayPal, so please call us on 0488 184 459 with your credit card details. Our apologies, we no longer accept cheques, Money Orders or cash. Private clients are asked to pay before work commences. Corporate clients may be granted 7 day terms. Please note that in the event that an account is not paid within 30 days, we reserve the right to impose penalty charges of 10% per month and, therefore, respectfully request that invoices are paid promptly. We believe prompt service deserves prompt payment. Corporate clients who are not in arrears are awarded our 10% Loyal Customer Discount.

Photographs

Photographs of mispers need to be recent, or at least be a good likeness, in focus, and preferably in jpg format. Ideally, at least one head and shoulders view, and one head to toe view, but if you have any others showing distinctive features such as tattoos, scars, birthmarks etc., then please include those as well.

Photographs for process serving purposes need to be full face and maybe informal, such as on Facebook.

If you would like us to take photographs of persons, buildings, vehicles or other property, for example, to prove identity or extent of damage, a small fee may apply.

PostNet Address

The vast majority of our work is distributed via email, because that is the most efficient way of Process Serving in such a vast country, often needing to meet tight deadlines for Court. Our address is a PostNet shop, similar to a P O Box, except that when mail arrives it can either be emailed to me for action, or forwarded directly to one of my agents. Similarly, it can be posted or couriered to an agent, or collected in person by an authorised agent. Some clients may not have scanning and email facilities, so they could deliver their documents in person to this address, however, if they require a consultation about their case, they would need to Contact Us by phone, email or Skype.

Pre-Employment Background Check

All Background Checks are to be conducted with the written consent of the subject.

Privacy

Pathfinder Investigations adheres to Australian Privacy Principles.

Progress Report

Upon request, we will provide you with Progress Reports so that you can see that we are conducting inquiries diligently and expeditiously for you. You are free to decide whether to stop, suspend or ask us to speed up inquiries as circumstances unfold.

Rottnest Island

In the event that inquiries or process serving is required on the island, return ferry charges will apply.

Skip Tracing

This means finding people eg tenants, businesses or individuals, who have “skipped town” and usually means they owe you money or goods in kind. We are not Registered Debt Collectors, though we can serve a Writ of Summons or Minor Case Claim etc for you – please see Process Serving.

Testimonials

Unless you otherwise advise us in writing, you agree that any written feedback given in emails or letters may be quoted on our Testimonials page on this website and any others in our name at our discretion. We welcome feedback and suggestions because we constantly strive to give you the best service. To provide a Testimonial please visit this website.

Travel Costs 

Please discuss travel costs with us at the Free Consultation, especially if Field Calls are required outside the Perth Metro area, although we will always seek your approval for such costs as circumstances arise. Whether we are conducting inquiries or process serving, the first 100Km are free. If it becomes necessary to book  flights, hotels or car hire, we select economy options and ask you to pay these in advance.

Why people go missing

https://missingpersons.gov.au/about/why-people-go-missing