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I am considering getting into the drone search and rescue industry in the southern California area. Specifically, using thermal drones to look for lost dogs. I stumbled upon a website https://www.missinganimalresponse.com/mar-courses/ that stated in part

If you plan to offer fee-based services, be aware that a few states (in the USA) have laws that say you must have a private investigator’s license in order to search for lost or stolen pets as a business.

I have two questions regarding this, the second is dependent on the answer of the first, so it may not be relevant:

Does California have this requirement and, if so, what is the reference?

If California does have this requirement AND I only accept donations (as opposed to fixed-fee based), does the PI License requirement still apply?

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to D&MA:SE. I wonder if you might have better luck getting answers to this question on Law:SE? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17 at 23:48
  • $\begingroup$ That’s a good idea, thanks. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan
    Commented Jun 19 at 12:52

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