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Initial Skip Tracing Procedures Before Hiring A Private Detective

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Winning a lawsuit is unfortunately not always the last step in a legal battle. Sometimes, the defendant refuses to pay the judgment awarded to you and you are therefore forced to track the subject down. While it is best to hire a private detective, there are a few things you can do to track down the defendant yourself.

Acquiring Information On Your Subject

Before you begin the skip tracing process online, begin by gathering all of the information that you already know about the subject. Anything from credit card applications to bills for utilities can tip you off to the location of the subject. Even if these details do not provide an exact address, they may give you an understanding of the activities of the subject. Also, this information can help you understand whether the subject is capable of paying the judgment and whether it is worthwhile to pursue the subject. Keep in mind that not all sources of information might be accurate or fully updated.

Automated Database Searching

The fastest way to obtain information is through automated database searching. This comes in one of two options: real-time interfacing and batch interfacing. Real-time interfacing allows you to receive information automatically by performing a search, while batch interfacing sends a request to a government department or private service. Then, this request is processed by an agent who then sends you the appropriate information.

Determining Whether Your Subject Is Alive

Begin by finding out if the subject is still alive, since some creditors have wasted resources tracking dead debtors. Since you have the debtor's social security number, you can use this to search the Social Security Death Records database. Then, you can also see the date of birth and last known residence of subject, which can help you determine if you have the right individual.

Using Data To Locate The Subject

Criminal records and violations can give you an idea of where the subject is located. For example, if the subject has had a traffic violation, this can indicate the general location that the subject has been residing in. Your subject may have been incarcerated and will therefore be unavailable for collections.

Skip tracing is very challenging, which is why some private detectives make a living out of it. While you can save money by handling the skip tracing process yourself, if you cannot locate the defendant, you may eventually need to hire a private detective.