201 KAR 41:090. Code of ethics.
RELATES TO: KRS 329A.025(2)(d)
STATUTORY AUTHORITY: KRS 329A.025(2)(d)
NECESSITY, FUNCTION, AND CONFORMITY: KRS
329A.025(2)(d) requires the board to promulgate administrative regulations
establishing a code of professional practice and conduct for private
investigator licensees. This administrative regulation establishes the code of
professional practice and conduct for private investigators.
Section 1. Proper Conduct of Practice.
(1) The licensee shall at all times recognize the primary obligation to protect
the health, safety, and welfare of the public in the performance of the
licensee’s professional duties.
(2) A licensee possessing knowledge of a
violation, by another licensee of KRS Chapter 329A or any administrative regulation
promulgated thereunder, shall report that violation to the board in writing and
shall cooperate with the board in furnishing any information or assistance as
the board may require.
(3) If the licensee becomes aware of a
decision taken by an employer or client, against the licensee’s advice, which
violates applicable federal, state, or local laws and regulations or which may
affect adversely the health, safety, or welfare of the public, the licensee
(a) Refuse to consent to the decision;
(b) In circumstances where the licensee
reasonably believes that other decisions will be made, notwithstanding the
licensee’s objections, terminate services with reference to that employer or
Section 2. The Code of Ethics. A private
(1) Adhere to the guidelines, policies,
and procedures of the Kentucky Private Investigators Act in KRS Chapter 329A
and the administrative regulations contained in 201 KAR Chapter 41.
(2) Practice with honesty, sincerity,
integrity, fidelity, morality, and good conscience in all dealings with
clients, other investigators, as well as other professions.
(a) The licensee shall perform his duties
in accordance with all local, state, and federal laws, as well as adhere to the
highest moral principles of the profession.
(b) The licensee shall not engage in
prohibited acts as set forth in KRS 329A.055.
(3) Provide only those services for which
the licensee is qualified to perform.
(a) The licensee shall not falsify or
permit misrepresentation of his or his associates’ academic or professional
(b) The licensee shall not misrepresent
or exaggerate his degree of responsibility in or for the subject matter of
(c) Brochures or other presentations
incident to the solicitation of employment shall not misrepresent pertinent
facts concerning employer, employees, associates, joint ventures, or his or
their past accomplishments with the intent and purpose of enhancing his qualifications
and his work.
(3) All advertising shall be truthful,
(4) Not accept any assignment that
creates a personal or business conflict of interest. Regarding conflicts of
(a) The licensee shall not accept
compensation, financial or otherwise, from more than one (1) party for services
on or relating to the same investigation, set of circumstances, court case, or
issues, unless all interested parties consent in writing after full disclosure
by the licensee;
(b) The licensee shall avoid all known
conflicts of interest with his employer or client and shall promptly inform his
employer or client of any business association, interest, or circumstance which
could influence his judgment or the quality of his services. When a conflict
becomes apparent, the licensee shall disclose the circumstances to the
licensee's employer and client.
(c) The licensee shall take reasonable
steps to ascertain the existence of potential conflicts of interests among his
employers and clients. A conflict exists when a private investigator, because
of some personal interest, finds it difficult to devote himself with loyalty
and singleness of purpose to the best interest of his client or employer.
(d) A private investigations company
shall be responsible for avoiding conflicts of interest between:
1. The company and the clients of any
private investigator(s) affiliated with the company;
2. The clients of one (1) private
investigator affiliated with the company and the clients of any other private
investigator affiliated with the company.
(e) A licensee or employee of a licensee
shall not contact or cause to be contacted any individual under investigation
for the purpose of revealing confidential information to that individual. Any contact
with a subject being investigated, whether intentional or unintentional, shall
be made a part of the investigative file of such case.
(f) The licensee shall ensure that all
clients are dealt with justly and impartially regardless of social, political,
racial, ethnic, or religious considerations, economic status, or physical
(5) Preserve client confidentiality under
any and all circumstances unless required otherwise by law.
(a) The licensee shall safeguard
information and exercise due diligence to prevent improper disclosure of that
(b) Any licensee or registered employee
may divulge to any law enforcement officer or prosecuting attorney or his representative,
any information the licensee may acquire as to any criminal offense, but he
shall not divulge to any other person, except as the licensee may be required
by law so to do, any information acquired by the licensee, except at the
direction of the employer or client for whom the information was obtained.
(c) A licensee or registered employee of
a licensee, shall not knowingly make any false report to his employer or client
for whom information was being obtained.
(d) Client confidentiality shall not:
1. Affect in any way the licensee’s
obligation to comply with a validly-issued and enforceable subpoena or summons;
2. Prohibit review of a licensee’s
professional practice by the Kentucky Board of Licensure for Private
3. Prohibit a licensee from utilizing any
such relevant information in the defense of a claim asserted against a licensee.
(6) Make all reporting based upon truth
and fact and shall express honest opinions on that basis.
(a) Upon the request of a client in good
standing, a licensee shall submit a written report to that client or his designee.
(b) A written report shall include all
relevant information obtained during the investigation.
(7) Explain to the full satisfaction of
all clients any fees and charges associated with his or her case.
(a) The licensee shall not bill a client
for services or expenses which have not been provided or incurred.
(b) A complete and comprehensive itemized
statement of services and expenses shall be provided to the client upon request.
(8) Make certain that any obligations and
responsibilities in contracts and mutual agreements shall be met in a timely
manner, and the principle of appropriate and adequate compensation for those
engaged in investigative work shall not be abused.
(9) Assist when necessary, law
enforcement officers and all other duly-constituted authorities.
(10) Ensure that the licensee's conduct does
not bring discredit to the investigative profession. A licensee may be deemed
by the board to be guilty of misconduct in his professional practice if:
(a) He is convicted in a court of
competent jurisdiction of a felony or misdemeanor which the board finds
reflects unfavorably on the licensee’s fitness for licensure; or
(b) His license or certificate of
registration to practice private investigations in another jurisdiction is
revoked, suspended, or voluntarily surrendered as a result of disciplinary
(11) Refrain from maliciously injuring
the professional reputation or practice of colleagues. (32 Ky.R. 2394; 33 Ky.R.
731; eff. 10-6-2006.)