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Private Investigator Salary Information for Oregon

The growth of jobs for private investigators in Oregon is expected to be robust in the ten year period leading up to 2020.  Oregon’s Employment Department estimates job growth to be 16.1%.  While 60% of these jobs are predicted to come from replacing investigators that leave the workforce, 40% are projected to be from the creation of new jobs.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that 230 PIs were employed in Oregon in 2012. 

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Their annual median wage is listed below followed by that of the highest earning PIs in the top 10th percentile.

Oregon City
Average Annual Salary

To become a private detective or private investigator in Oregon, a license from the state’s Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) is required.  Veterans who actively served in the military do not have to pay a licensing fee.

Applicants will have to fulfill a number of requirements and take a written exam to obtain this license.  They must achieve a score of 86% to pass this test.

Only those who are at least 18 years old can apply for a license.  They must have at least 1500 hours of experience as an investigator.  This time can be reduced by up to a third with college credit hours.

A criminal background check is also required, and applicants must have $5000 liability insurance either as a surety bond or errors and omissions insurance.  The DPSST also requires three professional letters of reference.

Licenses are good for two years, and private investigators must obtain 32 hours of continuing education to be able to renew it.

The BLS provides detailed 2012 salary information for private investigators in geographic regions.  In the case of Oregon, a detailed breakdown of the Portland area is available and is shown in the following table.

Private Investigator Salaries in Oregon

Area name
Annual mean wage
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro OR-WA

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