Financial investigations are conducted to locate the property and businesses of debtors.
This particular field is very popular with lawyers working for Israeli banks.
A private investigation office is requested to conduct an investigation according to the following parameters:
- Locating – Locating the current address of a debtor.
- Employment – Locating current place of employment and job position of debtors.
- Vehicle – Locating debtor’s vehicles.
- Real Estate – locating real estate / apartments / lots owned by the debtor.
- Bank accounts – locating bank accounts of debtors.
- Insurance companies – Investigation to locate the financial rights a debtor might have with different insurance companies.
- Pending court cases – locating 3rd parties sued by debtors.
- Execution office pending cases – tracing debtors outstanding debts.
- Limited financial investigation – usually includes locating residential address of debtor, place of employment, owned vehicles and real estate.
- Comprehensive financial investigation – includes “limited financial investigation” as well as locating vehicle in use and bank accounts.
- Extended financial investigation – included “comprehensive financial investigation” as well as locating financial rights with insurance companies and locating any pending cases in the different courts.
Financial investigations are also popular in the private sector, when business owners and companies have been “burned” by different customers that did not pay and a financial investigation was needed to locate the property of the debtor.
In order to conduct a financial investigation, an extensive field operation is needed where the investigator goes out and questions neighbors, local businesses, etc.
The investigator builds a “cover story” and tries to get the person in question to divulge any and additional information.
Important notice: while using a “cover story”, it is strictly forbidden to use a title of an official position holder.
Usage of vehicle investigation
Often, it is necessary to conduct a vehicle usage investigation – in which we follow the debtor for several times in order to prove that he is regularly using a vehicle that is not registered under his name. The investigator takes the job of following the debtor in question several times in order to photograph him at different times making use of a vehicle that is not registered to him.
At the same time, the investigator finds out who the vehicle is registered to, whether family members or friends of the debtor. Often the investigator will be required to conduct an additional and in depth investigation in order to find out whether the owner of the vehicle actually as a driver’s license.
After collecting the evidence, the investigator signs an affidavit regarding the surveillance conducted and the client, or someone on his behalf (with a power of attorney), will approach the Execution office and request that the vehicle will be repossessed, despite that the vehicle is not registered to the debtor.
“Veil lifting” investigation
There are non standard investigations in which the investigator or the investigation office are asked to conduct a comprehensive financial investigation for the purpose of “veil lifting”. This type of investigation requires that the investigation office prove that the debtor (who is usually the owner of a company) closed it due to outstanding debts and opened in its stead another company (under a different name) which is actually continuing the exact operations of the closed company.
The investigation office and / or the private investigator must prove in such cases that the new company is providing the same services as the old company that closed down, and that the debtor is the de facto manager of the new company. In such an investigation, the private investigator must covertly track the debtor, which includes: hidden surveillance, undercover photography at the place of business and wire taps.
Financial investigations are also common between couples, when one turns to the investigation office and asks to acquire information about any property that their spouse has. During such an investigation, the investigator must check and trace any “secret” bank accounts that the husband / wife might be hiding from each other.
Furthermore, the investigator checks whether the husband / wife purchased any real estate during the marriage without the knowledge of the other.
This type of investigation is done in order to prepare a divorce case that is being handled by the couple in order to balance out the financial resources between them (see personal investigation).
There are other requests that are made to the investigation office in order to locate any property of a debtor that has passed away. In such an investigation, the investigator must locate what property or equity the debtor left after his death.
The investigation office is required from time to time to conduct a financial investigation for a client from abroad who is interested in doing business with an Israeli citizen. From time to time, the investigation office must locate a debtor that has fled the border and left many debts behind.
In this type of investigation, where we are required to locate any property a debtor might have abroad, we use the help of our colleagues abroad, who are members of the W.A.D – World Association of Detectives.