Do you do No Find No Fee?

I regret we don’t do No Find No Fee because such inquiries don’t just involve our time, we often have disbursements from using certain databases to which the public don’t have access, however, whilst we cannot give guarantees to find someone, we are pretty good at what we do and so far only one person has eluded us in 2 years.

Please judge for yourself how good we are on our Testimonials page, especially the article entitled: Relatives Found With Only A Few Clues.  The vast majority of our Missing Person cases can be solved within those first two hours, though this particularly challenging case took 25.3 hours, however, since then we have gained access to better software.

Do I call the Police or Pathfinder?

If you suspect that a missing person (misper) is in imminent danger of suffering or causing death or serious injury to themselves or others and they are not responding to attempts to contact them, then please call the Police on 000. For example:

  • They have gone hiking, rock-climbing, fishing or flying a light aircraft and have not returned on time
  • They are in an area subject to inclement conditions eg floods, cyclones, bushfires or extreme heat
  • They have a medical condition such as diabetes, angina, epilepsy, asthma or Alzheimer’s
  • There is a history of causing or suffering domestic violence
  • They have recently been seriously threatened by someone eg loan shark, drug dealer or jealous husband
  • There is reason to suspect that they may have been abducted or assaulted by drug dealers, loan sharks or sex offenders
  • They use street drugs e.g. heroin, crystal meth or marijuana, etc.
  • They have a recent history of attempting to commit suicide or have expressed a desire to do so
  • They have mental health condition such as paranoid schizophrenia
  • They have made serious threats of injury to another person
  • They are a Registered Sex Offender
  • They are currently on bail for a serious offence and you have reason to believe that they may harm a witness or flee the country
  • They are a child under 10 years.
  • They are a child under 18 years or a vulnerable adult at risk of Sexual Exploitation.

If you have concerns that someone is at risk as above, but you are not quite sure, then call the Police on 131 444.

There is no need to wait 24 hours before making the call, that’s a Hollywood myth!

Examples Where Pathfinder Investigations Can Help

  • My brother went missing in 2006. The Police did an investigation, but we still have lots of questions about what happened to him. Pathfinder Investigations have persuaded the Police to release their Missing Person Report so that we can cross check the details. The Police have agreed in principal to re-open the investigation if we establish new lines of inquiry. This investigation is currently ongoing. Please see our Missing Person Appeals
  • We live in England and we lost touch with a relative who emigrated to Australia and has now become a beneficiary of a Will. How do we go about finding them, please? Pathfinder Investigations tracked the relative from England to Perth to a rural location in WA, visited them in person to explain the situation and persuaded them to phone home. They have now come into a small inheritance and have resumed a relationship with the client. Please see “Healing from Family Rifts” in our Recommended Books/Films
  • I had a teenage pregnancy which ended in my giving birth to a son, who is now an adult. The Father had left me during the pregnancy and my son has never met him. I would like to find the Father so as my son can meet his other family. I do have some information regarding the Father….Can you help me? Yes, Pathfinder Investigations may be able to trace the father dependent on how much information is available. We can also discreetly approach the father and ask him if he would like to meet his son as a stepping stone to forming a relationship. In addition, we can provide a referral for counselling to either party if required.
  • I bought a car and took out a loan for my partner and he made the repayments. When we split up, he took the car with him and refused to give it back because he said he was continuing to pay for it. The Police say this is a civil matter. How do I get the car back when I’m not sure of his new address? Within a few hours, Pathfinder Investigations obtained independent corroboration for the new address, collected a letter from the client’s solicitor’s office and personally delivered it to an adult at the address that evening. The partner subsequently returned the car within the 48 hour deadline rather than go to Court. 


How do I start a Missing Person investigation with Pathfinder?

Starting an InvestigationDon’t know where to start? Don’t know which direction to go in?

We can help you to find your loved one.

  • We offer a Free 30 Minute Consultation with a qualified licensed investigator, Jan Ross, who will discuss the case with you in your home, office, a cafe, or via Skype, phone or email.
  • An invoice will be generated for the initial investigation comprising disbursements (fees we incur to access certain websites) and two hours’ work for us to analyse the Misper (Missing Person) Report, devise lines of inquiry and commence the research. The investigation will commence once this is paid by EFT, cash or cheque.
  • We will supply you with a Misper Report for you to complete in Word format and ask you to email it to us at together with some recent photographs of the misper which show their facial features clearly.
  • For private clients, together with periodic invoices to suit your budget, which are payable in advance, you will be supplied with Progress Reports so that you can see we conduct inquiries diligently and expeditiously (a legal term meaning we’re going to do a proper job in a reasonable time). You may stop, suspend or ask us speed up the investigation at any time.
  • For solicitors, our fees will be charged on 7 day terms upon completion of the investigation, noting that for accounts exceeding 30 days we reserve the right to impose a 10% penalty charge. Regular clients, who are not in arrears, will be awarded a 10% Loyal Customer Discount.
  • Some mispers will be found fairly quickly, though please note that complex cases may take longer and we cannot guarantee to find the person you are seeking because, for example, they may have left the country. If that is the case, we belong to the Council of International Investigators, so we may still be able to find them for you. Rest assured that we will do our utmost to reach a successful conclusion for you and this may be possible through the use of social media profiling and/or digital forensics. Please Contact Us for a quote if you would like to consider this option.

Why should I choose Pathfinder?

Jan Ross served almost 20 years loyal and exemplary service in the West Yorkshire Police in the UK. For the last 5 of those years, she specialised in tracing missing persons and was instrumental in helping Charlie Hedges, the Liaison and Support Officer at the National Police Improvement Agency Missing Persons Bureau, to create a national policy document entitled The Guidance on the Management, Recording & Investigation of Missing Persons.

As a direct result of following, refining and teaching that policy to her colleagues, including uniformed supervisors and senior detectives, she had a 100% success rate in solving current cases.

Jan was also praised for her multi-agency work in preventing young people from going missing on a regular basis by Richard Bryan, who was the Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police and the Association of Chief Police Officers lead on Missing People.

Since migrating to Australia in 2010, she has acquired several Australian qualifications including Advanced Skip Tracing from the Private Investigators College of Australia in Brisbane.

Further details about Jan available at linked


Terms & Conditions

Adopted Children

We may be able to help you find your child provided you can give us the name of the Adoption Agency and formal permission to contact them. Whilst we cannot provide a mediation service ourselves, we recommend a book entitled “Healing from Family Rifts” available at 20% discount through our Recommended Books/Films page prior to starting this process.


Appeal For Information

Many clients have been looking for their loved ones for a long time before they come to Pathfinder Investigations for help, and complex cases of skip tracing can be particularly challenging. At any time in the investigation, clients may opt to put out an Appeal For Information. We offer to write a summary of the circumstances together with photographs of the Missing Person and put the Appeal on our Missing Person Appeals page as well as our Facebook page for just $60 + GST.  This is an amazingly low cost compared to newspaper advertising, especially when you consider that many people don’t buy newspapers these days and this style of media soon becomes tomorrow’s fish and chip paper. Our appeals remain on our sites until you ask us to take them down. This option is ideal for those clients who wish to maintain confidentiality.


Area Covered

We are based in Ballajura in Perth and we can make Field Calls anywhere in Western Australia, and all other internet, email and telephone inquires can be made worldwide. We belong to a National Network of Private Investigators and Process Servers across Australia and have a further 530 contacts in 146 countries. We usually cover the Greater Perth Area from Geraldton to Jurien Bay, Kalgoorlie, Esperance and all the Southwest Cape, though we are happy to quote to go further afield and the first 100Km of travel are free.


Cheating Partners

We can serve Divorce and Custody papers for you – see Process Serving, but we no longer conduct surveillance because the Family Law Act 1975 established the principle of no-fault divorce in Australian Law. When granting a divorce the Court does not consider why the marriage ended and the only ground for divorce is that the marriage broke down and there is no reasonable likelihood that the parties will get back together.



With the exception of Adopted Children and Cold Case Reviews, all cases of missing children should be dealt with by the Police in the first instance.


Code of Conduct

WA Security Industry Code of Conduct


Cold Case Reviews

Where the Police have conducted an initial investigation but made no progress for some time, Pathfinder Investigations will review the case for you, though this will be dependent on how much information is forthcoming from the current investigating officer. New leads can sometimes open up, for example, a witness who was in a relationship at the time of the disappearance may now be prepared to divulge information, or new databases may become available to us.



Pathfinder Investigations adheres to Australian Privacy Principles . Inquiries will be conducted with sensitivity according to the situation. They will also be conducted in an honest manner by declaring at the outset who we are and on whose behalf we are making inquiries, as it is against the WA Security Industry Code of Conduct to give false or misleading information. If we receive information from someone who does not wish to be identified, then we will respect their wishes and endeavour to find corroborative evidence by some other means. The information collated by Pathfinder will be stored securely. It will be divulged only to the client, unless information comes to light which gives us reasonable grounds to believe that the misper is at risk of causing  significant harm to themselves or others, or of committing a serious crime, in which case the  investigation will cease and a copy of the report will be passed to the Police. In such circumstances, the client will still be liable for costs up to the point where the case is handed over to the Police.


Corroborative Evidence

Where we receive unsure or anonymous information from one source, it will be double-checked through a different source to ensure this information is as accurate as possible.



We understand that waiting for news about your Loved One is very stressful, and that lack of closure can be as devastating as bereavement itself. Similarly, when a person who has deliberately distanced themselves from their family is found, or a biological parent or adopted child does not want the same kind of relationship as the client, this can be very upsetting. Pathfinder Investigations is aiming to provide an holistic counselling service to our clients.


Debt Collection

Pathfinder Investigations is not a Registered Debt Collector, though we can serve a General Procedure Claim, Minor Case Claim, Means Inquiry Summons, Default Judgment in a Mortgage Action, Creditor’s Statutory Demand for Payment of Debt, or a Writ of Summons for you. Please see Process Serving for more information.



Official documents such as Certificates of Title, Tenancy Reports, ASIC reports, etc. incur fees which are covered in our Minimum Fee for finding Missing Persons and Beneficiaries.


Discount for Regular Clients

A 10% Loyal Customer Discount applies to corporate or regular private clients who are not in arrears.


Due Diligence Field Calls

It is so easy for people and businesses to present themselves in a fraudulent manner online. Let us put your mind at rest by conducting inquiries with them in person on your behalf. This service is especially valuable to clients in the eastern states or overseas. Please ask us for a quote.



Feedback about our service is always welcomed. If there is any aspect which is less than satisfactory, please inform us immediately so that any remedial action can be taken as a matter of urgency. If you are delighted with our service, then please feel free to provide us with a Testimonial and mention your experience to your friends, because we pride ourselves on word-of-mouth referrals.


Field Call

A visit to a specific address or area where inquiries can be made in person eg making house-to-house inquiries. Please also see Due Diligence Field Calls and Travel Costs.


Free Consultation

We can provide you with a free 30 minute consultation in the comfort of your own home, or at a meeting place of your choice, so that we can discuss the background to your Missing Person case in detail and answer any questions you may have.



Goods and Services Tax is calculated at 10%.



The industry standard for finding Missing Persons is 60-80%. Our investigators were trained by a company which has a success rate of 80-100%. However, Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd cannot give any guarantees that they will find the person you are seeking because, for example, they may have left the country and we don’t know which area of another country they have gone even though we do have over 530 contacts in 146 countries. All we can promise is to use our investigative skills and experience to the very best of our ability.



Please see Cheating Partners.


Inquiry Agent

Jan Ross, Managing Director of Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd, holds an Inquiry Agent licence in her married name of Janine Smeulders issued by WAPOL ensuring that we understand our obligations under the Security & Related Activities (Control) Act 1996 and the Security & Related Activities (Control) Regulations 1997. Such licences are regularly reviewed by law.



An subcontractor who has passed Certificate III in Investigative Services and/or Certificate IV Government (Fraud Control), who is licensed by the Western Australian Police to conduct inquiries and holds their own Inquiry Agent Licence. WAPOL conduct a criminal history check here in Australia and, if necessary, in the investigator’s country of origin.


Legal Advice

Clients are advised to seek independent professional legal advice in all Court matters. For those who cannot afford a lawyer, please see “How to Run Your Own Court Case” on our Recommended Books/Films page.


Minimum Fee

In Missing Person cases for private clients, following our optional 30 minute Free Consultation, there is a minimum fee for disbursements (fees we pay to access subscription websites) and up to two hours research. If we have not yet found the person you seek, you will be provided with a Progress Report so that you can see we are conducting inquiries diligently and expeditiously.  You are free to decide whether to stop, suspend or speed up inquiries as circumstances unfold.



A missing person.


Multiple Defendants

Where two or more Defendants or Respondents are served at the same place at the same time, the first will be charged at the full price while any others are charged at 75% discount. If repeated visits to the address are necessary, these will all be charged at full price.


Mystery Shopping

This involves an investigator visiting your premises to make a test purchase of your goods or services and to assess your customer service. Even if your goods or services are the best in the world, you may lose sales and that all-important repeat business if your customer service is less than satisfactory. So we will give you constructive feedback on our buying experience.

If your customer service was not so great, we can refer you to our colleagues, who are a Registered Training Organisation, who will provide your staff with a tailor-made training package. See further details here.

If your goods, services and/or customer service were fantastic, then we will supply testimonials for up to three websites of your choice. Please note that we will only supply genuine testimonials.


Payment Methods & Terms

Please pay your invoice by EFT to: Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd,  BSB:306-115,  Account No:0425332.  Payments via credit card are now without surcharge. We use BPoint instead of PayPal, so please call us on 0488 184 459 with your card details. We accept cheques or Money Orders made payable to Pathfinder Investigations Pty Ltd, or cash. Private clients are asked to pay before work commences. Corporate clients may be granted 7 day terms. Please note that in the event that an account is not paid within 30 days, we reserve the right to impose penalty charges of 10% per month and therefore respectfully request that invoices are paid promptly. Corporate clients who are not in arrears are awarded our 10% Loyal Customer Discount.


Photographs of mispers need to be recent, or at least be a good likeness, in focus, and in jpg format. Ideally, at least one head and shoulders view, and one head to toe view, but if you have any others showing distinctive features such as tattoos, scars, birthmarks etc., then please include those as well. If you are unsure which ones to choose, please bring them to the Free Consultation on a USB stick or as hard copies for us to scan.

If you would like us to take photographs of persons, buildings, vehicles or other property, for example, to prove identity or extent of damage, a small fee may apply.


Pre-Employment Background Check


All Background Checks are to be conducted with the written consent of the subject.



Pathfinder Investigations adheres to Australian Privacy Principles.


Process Serving

We can serve Divorce and Custody papers, Writ of Summons, Subpoenas, etc for you from 6am-9pm seven days a week in the Greater Perth Area: Geraldton to Jurien Bay, Kalgoorlie, Esperance and all the Southwest Cape. We belong to a National Network of Private Investigators and Process Servers and, and as Jan is a Member of the Council of International Investigators, she has over 530 contacts in 146 countries, so please ask us for a quote today.

Please note that the person to whom documents are to be served may not necessarily be home on our first visit. Our Fixed Fee service covers up to 100Km free travel and the sworn Affidavit of Service. Excess travel incurs a surcharge.

We charge an additional fee for our Priority Service, where we collect the documents and successfully serve them and return the sworn Affidavit of Service within one business day.

Please also see Multiple Defendants.


Progress Report

Upon request, we will provide you with Progress Reports so that you can see that we are conducting inquiries diligently and expeditiously for you. You are free to decide whether to stop, suspend or ask us to speed up inquiries as circumstances unfold.


Rottnest Island

In the event that inquiries or process serving is required on the island, return ferry charges will apply.


Skip Tracing

This means finding people eg tenants, businesses or individuals, who have “skipped town” and usually means they owe you money or goods in kind. We are not Registered Debt Collectors, though we can serve a Writ of Summons or Minor Case Claim etc for you – please see Process Serving.



Unless you otherwise advise us in writing, you agree that any written feedback given in emails or letters may be quoted on our Testimonials page on this website and any others in our name at our discretion. We welcome feedback and suggestions because we constantly strive to give you the best service. To provide a Testimonial please visit this website.


Travel Costs 

Please discuss travel costs with us at the Free Consultation, especially if Field Calls are required outside the Perth Metro area, although we will always seek your approval for such costs as circumstances arise. Investigator’s meals taken outside the Metro area are limited to $30 per day. Whether we are conducting inquiries or process serving, the first 100Km are free. If it becomes necessary to book  flights, hotels or car hire, we select economy options and ask you to pay these in advance.


Why people go missing