The Saeima1 has adopted
Law on Detective Activity
The purpose of this Law is to determine the legal basis and range of subjects of detective activity as a special type of commercial activity and to regulate the rights and duties thereof.
(1) Detective activity shall mean services provided by individual merchants, partnerships and capital companies (hereinafter - detective company) and natural persons (hereinafter - detective) certified in accordance with the procedures prescribed by this Law, which are provided to a natural or legal person on the basis of a contract in order to protect the rights and lawful interests of such a person.
(2) A detective company and detective may provide the following detective activity services:
1) to gather information in civil matters and criminal matters;
2) to search for persons who have committed a criminal offence or persons missing without information as to whereabouts;
3) to ascertain the facts, matters or persons related to a criminal activity,
4) to provide consultations to natural persons and legal persons concerning security matters;
5) to ascertain the facts of unfair competition, unlawful commercial activities or other facts of unlawful economic activity;
6) to gather information characterising a person prior to the entering into a contract of employment or other civil contract, and information regarding the insolvency of a person;
7) to examine information related to the fulfilment of obligations under insurance contracts and compensation for material losses; and
8) to search for property lost by natural persons and legal persons or property, which has been unlawfully alienated.
(3) A detective company and detective may also provide other services provided they are not in conflict with law and serve to achieve the purpose specified in Paragraph one of this Section.
(1) The following may commence detective activity:
1) a detective company - after the receipt of a special permit (license) for the performance of detective activity (hereinafter - licence); and
2) a detective - after the receipt of a certificate for the performance of detective activity (hereinafter - certificate).
(2) The licence and certificate shall be issued for five years.
(3) The Cabinet shall prescribe the procedures for the issuance, extension of the term of operation, cancellation and suspension of a licence and certificate.
A detective company is entitled to obtain a licence in which:
1) the head of which and every person who has an office in the administration institutions thereof is a citizen of a Member State of the European Union or a state of the European Economic Area, who has not been convicted of committing of a criminal offence and who has not been determined to suffer from mental illness, addiction to alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or toxic substances; and
2) in which at least one certified detective is hired for the provision of the services of detective activity.
[7 April 2004]
(1) It is prohibited to issue a licence to detective companies in which the positions in administrative bodies are held by persons regarding which the State Police or State security institutions are in possession of information acquired and examined in accordance with procedures prescribed by law indicating that such persons belong to prohibited militarised or armed units, to political parties or public organisations, associations or movements thereof which have commenced public operation prior to the registration or continue operation after it has been suspended or terminated by a court adjudication, as well as regarding to organised criminal groups.
(2) It is prohibited to issue a licence repeatedly if it has been cancelled due to the reasons referred to in Section 7, Clause 1 of this Law.
A citizen of a Member State of the European Union or a citizen of a state of the European Economic Area and a Latvian non-citizen is entitled to obtain a certificate:
1) who has a higher legal education or the practical legal work experience of which in the law enforcement institutions (court, pre-trial investigation, prosecution, police, and State security institutions) is not less than five years;
2) who has not been found guilty of committing an intentional criminal offence in accordance with the procedures prescribed by law;
3) who has not been determined to suffer from mental illness, addiction to alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or toxic substances;
4) who has not been fired (removed) from office or service in law enforcement institutions in connection with disciplinary violations or non-conformity with the office (service) held, except the case when the relevant person does not conform to the position (service) due to his or her state of health; and
5) of whom the State Police or State security institutions are not in possession of information acquired and examined in accordance with procedures prescribed by law indicating that such persons belong to prohibited militarised or armed units, to political parties or public organisations, associations or movements of public organisations which have commenced public operation prior to the registration or continue the operation after it has been suspended or terminated by a court adjudication, as well as regarding affiliation to organised criminal groups.
[7 April 2004]
The licence of a detective company shall be cancelled if:
1) its activities are directed against the lawful interests of the State, society or a person;
2) it intentionally does not comply with the requirements of laws or other regulatory enactments;
3) it has knowingly provided false information in order to obtain a licence;
4) it does not fulfil tax liability systematically ;
5) it has not commenced detective activity within a period of six months from the moment of obtaining a licence; and
6) other laws or court adjudications have determined such.
(1) A detective certificate shall be cancelled, if:
1) his or her activities are directed against the lawful interests of the State, society or a person;
2) he or she intentionally does not comply with the requirements of laws or other regulatory enactments;
3) he or she has knowingly provided false information in order to obtain a certificate;
4) he or she does not fulfil tax liability systematically;
5) he or she has been determined to suffer from mental illness or addiction to alcohol, narcotic, psychotropic or toxic substances;
6) he or she has not commenced detective activity within a period of six months after obtaining the certificate;
7) in accordance with procedures prescribed by law he or she has been found guilty of committing of an intentional criminal offence; and
8) other laws or court adjudications determine it.
(2) A detective certificate may be cancelled if the detective has performed the activities referred to in Section 12 of this Law.
(3) If a detective is charged with the committing of an intentional criminal offence, the operation of the certificate shall be suspended. The operation of a certificate may be renewed from the moment when the decision of the prosecutor or the court adjudication rehabilitating the detective has entered into force.
[7 April 2004]
(1) A written contract regarding the provision of detective activity service shall be entered into with each client . If the contract is entered into by a detective company, the given name, surname of the detective, the number and date of the issue of a certificate of the detective who is to provide detective activity services must also be specified in addition to the requirements of the Civil Law.
(2) If a contract regarding the gathering of information in a criminal matter is entered into, the provider of a detective activity service within a period of 24 hours shall in writing inform the performer of procedures in the records of which the criminal matter is entered and harmonise with the performer of procedures his or her activities in this matter.
(1) In the performance of detective activity, a detective is entitled:
1) to perform disguised (hidden) questioning of a person regarding the facts he or she is interested in or the circumstances of the matter or event;
2) to perform detailed questioning of a person and accept written explanations from this person regarding the facts he or she is interested in and the circumstances of the matter or event with consent of the person;
3) to perform inspection of places, buildings, structures, premises, machinery, equipment, items and documents non-accessible to public with the consent of the owner or legal possessor;
4) to perform an open or disguised (hidden) inspection of places, buildings, structures, premises and items in the premises accessible to public; and
5) to perform open or disguised (hidden) observation and shadowing of persons, objects and the movement thereof.
(2) For taking measures of detective activity referred to in Paragraph one of this Section it is permitted to utilise video recordings, audio recordings and photographing, as well as other technical means if they do not threaten human life or health, as well as the surrounding environment and in particular circumstances are not prohibited by law and other regulatory enactments.
(3) The duty of a detective is to hand over for the disposal of law-enforcement institutions all information obtained during the detective activity process regarding intended or committed criminal offences, as well as the persons related thereto.
During the performance of detective activity it is prohibited to cause physical, moral or material injury to persons, threaten human life and health, as well as the surrounding environment, use or to threaten the use of physical means of coercion, or to incite people to criminal acts.
It is prohibited for a detective company and detective:
1) to mislead clients knowingly and utilise information obtained against the interests of the State or the interests of a client or other persons protected by law.
2) to transfer the certificate to other persons;
3) to take operative activity measures; and
4) to disclose information obtained in fulfilling his or her duties without the consent of the client, except in the cases specified in Section 10, Paragraph three of this Law and other laws.
For the issuance of a licence and certificate and for the extension of the term of operation thereof, a State fee shall be paid according to the procedures and in the amount specified by the Cabinet.
The control of detective activity shall be carried out by the State Police, which are entitled to request documents and oral or written information necessary for the performance of control functions.
1. The Cabinet shall formulate and adopt the regulatory enactments referred to in this Law by 1 November 2001.
2. Within a period of three months after the coming into force of this Law, the State Police shall examine the conformity of the existing detective companies and detectives to the Law on Detective Activity and cancel licences if they do not conform to the requirements of this Law.
3. The requirement regarding the practical legal work experience in law-enforcement institutions referred to in Section 6, Clause 1 of this Law may not serve as a basis for the cancellation of a licence and refusal to issue a certificate to a detective who has commenced detective activity prior to the date of adoption of this Law, provided that he or she complies with the other requirements of the Law.
This law shall come into force on 1 November, 2001.
This Law has been adopted by the Saeima on 5 July 2001.
President V. Vīķe-Freiberga
Rīga, 20 July 2001
1 The Parliament of the Republic of Latvia
Translation © 2006 Tulkošanas un terminoloģijas centrs (Translation and Terminology Centre)