The Last Detective - Nardizzi Inc.

Subcontracting work - investigations

Recently I posed a question on Twitter about working as a subcontractor for other PI firms "When out-of- state / country firms call at the 11th hour looking for help, and add that they usually get a "professional courtesy" discount, what is your take? Who is doing who the favor here? Curious on expectations.

Results were interesting. The Mencken Of The Mekong, @DarrylDaugherty put it well: Keyword: courtesy. They’re seeking to derange your operational schedule which is discourteous.


Mike Lantz @PaladinMikeL had a similar take: Generally if we reach out to a firm for some last minute help we offer to pay a premium because it’s last minute and we appreciate the courtesy of the help in the first place!


Cath @drowsygeek also chimed in with her usual humor and insight:


If someone contacts me and the second thing out of their mouth is "professional courtesy discount", they're liable to get the usual double fee for emergency services instead.

No. Just no. Hell no.

And for a different take, @anonymouspi pointed out that there are quite successful business models that do offer a courtesy rate and are upfront about that from the beginning as they cater to this kind of work:


Well, that's pretty much all my work, and I do have a preferential rate for other agencies. BUT my rates are STARTING points for billing, I add additional fees for urgency, inconvenience etc etc. It's still going to be less than I'd charge a private client coming to me


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I think the key with subcontracting work out in the investigative industry is to build a roster of solid subcontractors. Make sure expectations on billing rates and quality are under agreement and understood by all. Don't call new firms hinting you expect a discount. If you are making money on a case in other ways, and need work done quickly in a distant state or country, the subcontracting firm is doing you the favor—expect to pay full freight. Never put profits over quality.

Hunt for Juctice - Intermountain PI Podcast

Great to be in conversation with my friend, acclaimed PI Scott Fulmer, on his excellent podcast series, Intermountain PI Podcast, recorded from the crossroads of the west in historic Salt Lake City. We talked about my team's two recent exonerations of Gary Cifizzari and James Watson. As he writes: "We go from Boston to San Francisco’s Tenderloin District on a hunt for justice with private eye John Nardizzi. We make a brief pit stop afterwards and discuss his first boss, the legendary PI Jack Palladino who was senselessly killed recently. Plus, we look at Telegraph Hill, the critically acclaimed neo-noir mystery John wrote featuring fictional private eye, Ray Infantino."