These days, international business and relationships are a way of life. Corporations down to individuals now have their hands in the global market. Businesses seek out profitable deals and investments overseas to increase profitability. Individuals now connect to businesses and people all over the world via the internet. Even marriages and families often involve more than one country. It seems everyone knows someone in a foreign country.


What does it all mean? It means that money and assets are now spread out over the globe like never before, and finding and verifying international assets and bank accounts is now big business. Professional investigators are playing a key role in the search.

Every day, companies and individuals are subject to investigations because they are suspected of diverting money or assets. Such investigations can involve criminal investigations pertaining to fraud or scams, or be initiated by tax authorities. Lawyers work cases where finding assets is a top priority in cases such as divorce, lawsuits, debt collection, and mergers. Because money and property can be just about anywhere, finding the assets requires a trained professional with resources and connections.

International investigators work with lawyers and private clients to uncover international assets and search for bank accounts. As you probably learned from watching Magnum PI, this information is quite valuable for divorce cases and personal matters, but it’s also a great tool for business due diligence. A seller may need to know if a potential buyer has sufficient funds, and a person filing for divorce may need to see the money trail.

Each country is unique with different privacy and banking rules. Regardless, an investigator with the proper training and resources in the country can conduct a broad search. Results are for informational purposes and usually cannot be used in court. However, most clients use the findings to make informed decisions, and lawyers can also issue court orders on the identified banks. An individual may not even spend money on a lawsuit if the subject has no assets. Knowledge is power and money speaks like no other evidence.

What do you need to start an international asset search?

Investigators typically request the subject’s full name and date of birth as a minimum, and the country or area to be searched, and the type of assets you’re looking for (banks or property). Investigators may also request a passport copy and address.

What does this type of service cost, and how long does it take?

International asset search services involve specialized private investigators with access to protected information and data in one or more foreign countries. Costs to obtain the information can range from $800 to much higher, depending on the country or countries, type of asset search, and the information the client provides for the search.

What can you expect and how accurate is the service?

Bank account searches are often the most accurate and the best starting point, as they can indicate where a subject may have property. Results are not actual statements from the bank, but include bank name, branch location, account type, last statement balance, and other details from the bank.


Investigators can conduct bank account searches with a surprising degree of accuracy, uncovering open accounts in the subject’s name in the country. Property record searches vary from one jurisdiction to the next.

Maria Taylor is an Investigation Analyst for Wymoo® International, a professional private investigation firm based in Florida, specializing in international background checks, private investigation and due diligence.

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