When it comes to criminal law proceedings, the Fourth Amendment protects Americans from unreasonable searches and seizures. The law is in place to protect people from unlawful governmental intrusions in response to situations that do not have adequate support to present an actual risk.

Unless there is an emergency or other legal exception, the police must have a warrant before they can search you or your property. In order to gain a search warrant, the police must demonstrate to a magistrate judge that they have probable cause to believe that a certain item will be found in a certain place.

Search Warrant Requirements

However, a search warrant is not required if:

  • You give police your permission to search you
  • Something is in plain sight
  • After arrest, police are allowed to search you and your immediate surroundings (said to be within your constructive possession)

If you find yourself in a position where you believe the police may have conducted an unlawful search, contact a local Criminal Defense Attorney in your area today to find out what your rights are. Click to learn more about Criminal Defense Law.