4th of July Surveillance Pros and Cons

4th of July Surveillance Pros and Cons4th of July Surveillance Pros and Cons

Is the 4th of July a good time to conduct surveillance?

The days leading up to the 4th of July holiday are usually filled with insurance examiners and law firms reaching out to their private investigator to set up surveillance. The idea is that the 4th of July is great time to get a subject out and active.

This commonly occurs when there are open claims and litigation involving subjects that haven’t been investigated in a while or there are some lingering concerns about the subject because they have been missing treatment appointments and cancelling scheduled doctors’ appointments.

In our experience there are some reasons why surveillance on the 4th of July can be beneficial and some reason why it poses some challenges.


  • The subject might engage in activities that they wouldn’t normally. (Parades, Runs, Surfing, Beach, Golf, etc.)
  • When the 4th of July occurs on a weekend you have multiple days to conduct surveillance.
  • Due to increased traffic and commotion, it can be easier to setup and blend in neighborhoods that are suspicious of unknown vehicles.


  • Many people take off for the whole week or weekend leading up to or after the 4th of July so if you setup after they leave town you are sitting on an empty house.
  • The traffic during the 4th of July holiday can make it difficult to maintain visual contact on the roads and freeways.
  • The activity pattern of a subject during the 4th of July is often very different than a typical weekend. This means they might leave very early in the morning or late at night.
  • If the subject is hosting a party or gathering at their house it is often difficult to document activities as they are occurring inside or in a private backyard.
  • The subject might leave their residence in a vehicle that they don’t normally drive, which makes it more difficult to follow.
  • Alternate transportation might be utilized due to the warm weather (Bikes, Scooter, Electric Scooter, Golf Cart), which can poses challenges for following and maintaining visual contact.

In our 35 plus years investigating workers’ compensation claims and fraud we have conducted thousands of surveillance investigations.  Our experience tells us that profiling a subject, developing a solid plan, and using an experienced field investigator are key to getting useful video footage of a subject’s activities. The more frequent the surveillance efforts occur the more likely you are to get a true picture of the subject’s activities, or lack thereof.

If you elect to conduct surveillance on the 4th of July weekend you want to be sure that your private investigator has developed a solid profile for the subject before starting surveillance.

A pre-surveillance profile and background check should include the following.

  • Verifying a home address
  • Developing vehicles/plates that the subject drives
  • Obtain a photograph or description of the subject
  • Social Media Research (Determine locations the subject frequently visits)
  • Establish who lives with the subject (Spouse, Kids, Cousins, etc.)
  • Determine best setup location and if you need more than one surveillance operative

If you have any questions about surveillance strategies on a case you are handling please let us know.