While it is true that “the fish is caught by its mouth”, sometimes, what comes out of the mouth cannot be relied upon as the whole truth. Where else would lies be coming from after all?
That is why Psychology is being considered as the antidote of lying, where all the physical reactions and eye movements are being observed to be able to separate the truth from lies, as well as the rationale behind those actions and reactions are being explained.
But sometimes, even the help of psychologists no longer apply to habitual liars especially hardened criminals that truthful reactions can no longer be visible and they can be so convinced that they already become immune to their own lies they begin to believe them themselves.
Hence, the use of lie detector test or also known as the polygraph test which senses various signals of the body which are not visible to the naked eye like the rise of blood pressure, the skin response through sweating, and the changes in the breathing patterns. This test is considered to be more than 90% accurate although it has been widely contested since its invention in 1921.
Average Cost of Lie Detector Test
The lie detector test cost can range anywhere between $250 and $2,000 depending on the company performing the test, the location, the purpose of the test, among other factors but typically averages around $300 to $800 for a two-hour session. The price can be higher depending on the circumstances such as when there is an emergency and the result is needed immediately.
The Dallas Lie Detectors has the following rates for their services:
- Criminal/Civil – $2,000.00
- In-custody (Jail or Prison) – $2,000.00
- Called to Court – $2,000.00
- Private Domestic Infidelity/Private Issues Examination – $300.00
- Private Issue Matters – $400.00
- Employee Theft – $250.00
- Texas Sex Offender Program – $300.00
- Government, Law Enforcement or Intelligence Agency Requests – $400.00
- Government, Law Enforcement or Intelligence Agency Requests – $800.00
On the other hand, Western Polygraph charges the cost to take a polygraph at around $300 to $500 flat rates depending on the issue being investigated.
What are Included
Usually, the cost to take a polygraph includes the service cost of the machine used for the testing, the professional fees of the certified examiners and the entire contingent expenses necessary in the performance of the task.
The lie detector test usually takes around one and a half to four hours depending on the reason why such test is undertaken in the first place. These circumstances are the very basis of the questions being given during the test.
The person subjected to questioning needs to wear four to six sensors of the Polygraph machine which would be attached to his or her body. These sensors send signals and are recorded on a single strip of moving paper called the graph. The said signals are the results of the following:
- The breathing rate
- The pulse
- The blood pressure
- The perspiration
The result can be immediately discussed with the certified examiner. Depending on the company’s policy, a written report might be required to be released but some companies’ policies do not allow those. But if there are some which would usually do but if it was not included in the price, might require an additional fee.
A polygraph test requires more than what it seems. Since it is built around the pursuit of the truth, a lot of things are needed to be considered to be able to ensure that is what you are going to get. But of course, those steps prior to getting the end result would have to be paid for.
Some of the additional costs you would likely be setting a budget for aside from the cost to take a polygraph are the following:
- The majority of the certified professionals in this field would ask for a non-refundable deposit that usually ranges from $100 to $200 to secure your location. This is their assurance fee. So it is sort of like payment for wasting their time if you don’t show up at the designated time or place of the test or if you changed your mind and canceled the transaction altogether. In essence, it is not going to be an extra cost if you show up and take the test because this will be deducted from your final bill.
- And speaking of cancellation, make sure to clear the cancellation policy of the professional you are dealing with as some are strict with comes to customers changing their mind too late into the contract. There are companies who would charge you the full amount if you cancel within 24 to 48 hours prior to the test so you might as well take it.
- Most polygraph tests are done at the company’s office where the machine is already set up ready for use anytime. These situations are the ones usually quoted when you ask for the pricing. But in some cases where you want the test done anywhere else like in the comfort of your own home, you might find that the cost would likely be 50% more than the price originally quoted due to transportation and mobilization of the equipment as well as extra effort on the part of the professional doing the test.
- But if you want to catch lying kids, husbands, or catch any perpetrators red-handed at home, installing a CCTV cameraswould be far more reliable than having to question them afterward.
Shopping for Lie Detector Test
When looking for a lie detector test, it is important to ensure that the company where the test is to be taken is a reputable one and not some fly-by-night. One way to ensure this is by looking into its background. It also helps if the company is a member of a reputable organization of companies of the same industry like the American Polygraph Association or APA.
The Global Polygraph Network provides you a locator of certified examiners within their network. They have locations all over the United States, Canada, as well as other parts of the world.
Factors Affecting Lie Detector Test Cost
- Lie Detector Testing Company – the companies as represented by their certified professionals would charge at varying rates depending on their expertise, credibility, the cost of doing business, among other factors. Be sure to get services of those who are really qualified and certified if you want credible results. Do not get too excited getting the cheaper service and ensure that they are legitimate by looking them up at APA website.
- Location – the pricing is also based on the geographical location as the cost of living and cost of doing business are also being taken into consideration.
- The reason for the test – people avail the polygraph test for a variety of reasons and these are the very basis of how long should the test be performed because of the set of questions that are likely to be asked. And also depending on the issue, a thorough questioning might likely be performed than other types of issues you want answers from.
- Where it is performed – you would find that doing the test at the company’s office way cheaper compared to requesting it to be done somewhere else due to other expenses which would add to the original cost.
- Type of lie detector test – there are several types of tests, each with varying degree of accuracy and applicability to certain situations which could somehow affect the pricing. Talk things thoroughly with the professional to discuss what exactly are you expecting to get to obtain the best result which also would be worth your payment.
- Schedule of the test – sometimes, professionals charge differently based on the day of schedule and the time. An example is a Truth or Lie which charges tests for private issues at $750 for daytime weekday appointments and $1,100 for weekdays after 5:00 PM and anytime during Saturday and Sunday.
Did you know that…
- There are certain drugs that can affect the outcome of the lie detector test. So it is important to disclose all medications you are taking to the professional as some drugs may throw off a lie detector like the antidepressants which would likely make you more relaxed than usual compared to the reaction you would have shown without it.
- There are three types of lie detector tests namely, the Screening Polygraph Test which is the least accurate and is typically used in the hiring process in government or security positions; the Specific Issue Polygraph that primarily focuses on a single primary question which would help determine whether an individual should remain as a suspect or not; and the Multi-Facet Polygraph which presents four different questions from every aspects revolving around one single issue.
- There are a lot of issues that the lie detector test would be useful in determining the truth such as assault; personal matters such as child custody or cheating husband or wife; criminal matters like sex offenders and thefts; hiring employees; insurance frauds; etc.