Investigations in Ukraine are often the subject of social discussions mainly because the investigation profession is not regulated by Ukrainian law. And so no person can become a licensed investigator.
The Ukrainian parliament has tried to pass such a law regulating the investigation profession many times since 2000 without any success. The specialists say the main reason is they are concerned that private investigators will learn too much about what is often referred to as the shadow side of Ukrainian life, such as the reality of corruption and nepotism in governmental bodies, money laundering along with the relationships of some authorities with the criminal underworld.
However, in a de facto sense certain investigation services such as surveillance, interviewing, collection of information, photography of some objects are allowed by law and common sense can prevail and enable private or commercial investigations to be completed successfully.
The real problem is that facts obtained and confirmed by investigators cannot be submitted as evidence in the Ukrainian courts. However irrespective and in despite of these problems nearly 2000 people are employed in investigation services across Ukraine
Some advanced Ukrainian investigators will even try to avoid the law by registering themselves as a mass-media company, and by doing so, journalistic investigations are foreseen by law and journalists are even allowed to have so-called traumatic weapon (usually, very precise copy of a real hand gun (eg: Makarov pistol), however even in such cases it still doesn’t help with recognition of evidence by the courts or in obtaining any special rights.
It is of no surprise that almost all Ukrainian investigators are former policemen, and their relationships within the police and other state authorities are appreciated by their employers. It used to be that an investigator was considered as just an intermediary between the client and the police in as much as the investigator has the contacts and can “push” the client’s issue in law enforcement bodies.
The most popular investigator’s job within the Ukraineis in checking of adultery and tracing of missing persons. Clients will also often ask an investigator to conduct enquiries about telephone, e-mail or ICQ taps, installation of secret cameras and bugs, tracing of cell-phone locations, however reputable Ukrainian investigators will refuse to handle such cases, because to do so is totally illegal.
In the commercial sphere the most often requested service is the tracing of assets, brand protection through the provision of anti-counterfeit services, and obtaining intelligence for due diligence, Know Your Customer and background investigative reports.
There are greater opportunities for investigators in the commercial sector because the law does not protect businesses from investigations in the same manner it does with citizens. Experienced investigation companies in the Ukrainewill always establish legal ways to conduct their investigations and provide reports.
The most difficult action is to manage liaisons with law enforcement agencies as corruption is considered endemic with most departments contending with corrupt practices. It should be noted that clients do not usually like to pay bribes.
Ukrainians clients do not like to adopt these practices because they know it is expensive and not usually effective; and foreign company clients do care about their reputations, and so it is crucial for an investigation company to have excellent contacts in law enforcement bodies free of corrupt practices so as to finalize certain types of cases, particularly in areas such as anti-counterfeit or fraud cases.
Particular problems happen due to gaps in Ukrainian law. For example, trademark owners have no right to be present on liquidation of counterfeit products seized by the authorities. It is no secret that a lot of counterfeit is liquidated on paper only; whereas in real life it comes back to the market, whilst equally confusing for brand owners is the fact a court can decide – absolutely legally – that counterfeit product has some commercial value and can therefore be returned back in civil circulation!
Thus investigation in Ukraine can be expensive, however in considering the level of fraud, counterfeit, unfair business practice, corruption, there is no doubt a lot of business and private customers that require the services of an ethical, professional investigation company in Ukraine