Life after a Career in Law Enforcement
Posted by Pamela S. on Monday, April 16th, 2012
You've done your duty for your city, state and country. Maybe you aren't ready to put your feet up in front of the television, or spend your days lounging around the pool. When retirement comes around, don’t let your talent go to waste. You've spent years honing your skills for the public good. Those skills are just as valuable in the private sector. Use that gold watch to keep time during your new career.
Maybe the watch isn't real gold. The pocket watch in the photo was given to a retired Police Sergeant in 1929. In this economy, many of us can't afford to retire. We live longer than people did in 1929. We now realize that keeping active into our senior years helps us maintain our physical strength and mental acuity.
I'm sure you have a wealth of stories from your time in law enforcement. Maybe this is the time to write that book about your experiences. If that doesn't interest you, there are other ways to share your knowledge:
Accident Reconstruction Specialist
If you were trained in accident reconstruction as a police officer, you can carry those skills into a well paid position working for an insurance company, claims adjuster firm or as an Accident Reconstruction Specialist.
Here is some information from The Accreditation Commission for Traffic Accident Reconstruction:
“The Accreditation Commission for Traffic Accident Reconstruction (ACTAR) is an internationally recognized commission with more than 1250 ACTAR Accredited Reconstructionists practicing throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates. These Accredited Reconstructionists are engineers, physicists, police officers, consultants, former police officers and those of other backgrounds working in the profession.
A reconstructionist must apply to the commission and meet minimum standards of education and experience. If the standards are met, the reconstructionist must successfully complete a practical and a theoretical examination to be accredited.
The examination consists of two parts. A Theory portion, 75 questions (multiple choice, true-false and problem solving) with a maximum time limit of four (4) hours for completion. Examination questions are drawn from areas such as Kinetic Energy, Conservation of Momentum, Time-Distance Evaluations, Physical Evidence from the road and vehicle, Photography, Lamp Analysis and Airborne Analysis.
The Practical portion is a staged collision. The candidate is supplied with photographs of the scene and involved vehicles, vehicle data and damages, location and type of physical evidence and a skeleton diagram. The candidate is asked to provide impact and departure speeds, angles, Delta-V for each vehicle and identify specific physical evidence. There is a maximum time limit of four (4) hours to complete this portion of the examination. ”
If this sounds like the second career choice for you, learn more by attending the
ARC-CSI Crash Conference, held June 4-7, 2012, in Las Vegas, NV.
Working in the Insurance Industry
According to the Insurance Information Institute, and the FBI, the estimated cost of insurance fraud is approximately $30 billion a year. Many insurance companies have in-house investigators to look into fraudulent claims. Whether it is auto, property or health insurance, there is a need for good investigators.
From the The United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics:
“Claims adjusters, appraisers, examiners, and investigators evaluate insurance claims. They decide whether an insurance company must pay a claim, and if so, how much.
Most claims adjusters, appraisers, examiners, and investigators work full time. They often work outside the office, inspecting damaged buildings and automobiles.
The median annual wage of claims adjusters, examiners, and investigators was $58,620 in May 2010. The median annual wage of insurance appraisers of auto damage was $56,230 in May 2010.
Employment of claims adjusters, appraisers, examiners, and investigators is expected to grow 3 percent from 2010 to 2020, slower than the average for all occupations. Growth should be particularly strong in health insu
rance as a result of federal legislation mandating insurance coverage. ”
Insurance companies also outsource much of their work to private investigation companies. I’ll talk about that career choice a bit later.
There are boundless opportunities available in the security industry, if you are looking for a second career. Read Security Director News to get a feel for the kind of position that will suit your skills. A Director or Head of Security is a must for large corporations. This is an executive position and companies are particularly interested in applicants with a background in law enforcement.
Corporate security requirements are evolving as corporate espionage, employee malfeasance, Internet crime and terrorist acts become a greater threat to American business. Retail companies also employ law enforcement retirees in loss prevention positions.
The Department of Homeland Security welcomes the skills of former law enforcement personnel and they have a wide range of second career options available. You can still serve your country, even after retirement.
Forget that quote “Those that can't do, teach.” You can do and you have done. If you enjoy working with people and sharing your knowledge, consider working as an instructor. Bring your considerable experience and influence the new generation of law enforcement. More universities and colleges are offering courses in criminal justice or police sciences.
The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center is a great place to land if you have worked for a federal law enforcement agency.
“The FLETC serves as an interagency law enforcement training organization for 90 Federal agencies. The FLETC also provides services to state, local, tribal, and international law enforcement agencies. FLETC is a unique inter-agency organization that prepares the next generation of law enforcement officers to meet the Nation’s most pressing law enforcement challenges. We arm Federal agents and officers from more than 80 Federal agencies with the skills, knowledge and professionalism they need to protect our country. We are looking for recently retired Federal law enforcement officers and agents to help us train the next generation of law enforcement professionals.”
FLETC hires instructors in the following areas:
• Legal Division
• Behavioral Sciences Division
• Physical Techniques Division
• Firearms Division
• Driver and Marine Division
• Enforcement Operations Division
• Investigative Operations Division
• Technical Operations Division
• Counterterrorism Division
Celebrities, CEOs of large corporations, and other wealthy individuals want protection and are willing to pay. This can be a glamorous and exhilarating career choice for someone who doesn't mind travel and being at the mercy of someone else's schedule. The downside is that some people are difficult and demanding to work for and if you have a family, you will be away from them.
If you have specialized in a certain field during your law enforcement career, you can transfer those skills and build a lucrative career as a consultant and expert witness. Fraud and financial crime are two growing areas where your expertise is in demand.
If you want a career with more variety, one where you can take advantage of all of your skills, become a private investigator. Since Eugène François Vidocq founded the first private investigation agency in France, in 1833, our industry has been siphoning off the best of the best from law enforcement agencies. Vidocq was a former thief who went on to become Chief of the Sûreté Nationale, (French National police). After retiring from police work, Vidocq founded the first Private Investigation agency, Le bureau des renseignements (Office of Information).
The scope of private investigation work is pretty much unlimited. We investigate everything from insurance and financial fraud to workplace violence and theft. We provide litigation support and conduct pre-employment background checks. The list goes on and on. Many PI companies also have a security division. Use your surveillance, research or interviewing skills to build a new career.
The team at Sheer Investigations has the benefit of years of experience as former police officers, FBI, DEA, IRS, and Secret Service agents. Headed by former FBI Assistant Director Tom Sheer, Sheer Investigations has provided a new home for experienced and talented men and women who still want to make a valuable contribution to society.
Former FBI Assistant Director Tom Sheer has recruited the best from the FBI, DEA, IRS and Secret Service to build a formidable team at Sheer Investigations. Our private investigators have the sensitivity and experience to handle the most delicate investigations.