To become a private investigator in Alaska can be lucrative, since the state had the third highest average salary in the country in 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The average annual salary in the state was $63,810 with those in the top 10th percentile of the profession earning an average of $79,660 a year.
110 individuals were employed as private investigators in Alaska in 2012, according to the BLS. This employment included PIs in a range of age groups. According the state’s Department of Labor, approximately 65% of the PIs working in the state were under 45 years old in 2011.
Becoming a private investigator in Alaska is relatively straightforward, since most locations in the state do not require a special license to be a private investigator. Only a business license is required for those working independently, and this is relatively easy to obtain.
The exceptions to the state-wide lack of licensing requirements include Anchorage and Fairbanks, which do require private investigators in these cities to have a PI license. Fairbanks requires a background check and liability insurance in the form of possession of a $10,000 surety bond. Anchorage also requires that applicants undergo a background check. There were 21 licensed private investigators operating in the city in 2011.
Options for PIs in Alaska include working for detective agencies or striking out on their own as independent private investigators. The job situation in Alaska is better for the self-employed, since there were 57 people registered in the state looking for PI jobs in 2011. Only two positions were posted. As with most fields, though, there are often more jobs available than what are listed publicly, so it may pay to check with existing detective agencies for positions.
Private investigators frequently network with other investigative professionals to share information. In Alaska, this can be done through the Alaska Investigators Association.
The table below shows salary data for private investigators in Alaska as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.