The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects Americans from unreasonable search warrants from the government. That means that in the absence of an emergency situation or other legal exception, a police officer must against you with a search warrant before conducting a search on your person or property.

As you get a Registration Order

The Fourth Amendment requires that the record be specific and reasonable. That means that the judge will only approve a search warrant if law enforcement is specific as to where and what you want to search. Law enforcement must also prove that there is probable cause that a specific thing is located in a specific place.

Whether or not the order is issued is at the discretion of the judge. If a judge finds that law enforcement has gathered probable cause and has included sufficient specificity in the petition for the order, then the judge will issue the search warrant. The suspect will not be present during this proceeding and will not be given an opportunity to present his arguments against the issuance of an order. However, in later proceedings the suspect may argue that the search warrant was improperly granted.

When a Registration Order is not Necessary

There are a few situations where legal enforcement is exempt from obtaining a search warrant. Those situations include:

Consent: The law enforcement officer may request entry into a person home or search a person belongings. If the person consents to the search and gives express permission to the executor to search, then the search warrant is unnecessary.

Full Sight Doctrine: A law enforcement officer does not need a search warrant to obtain evidence of something in plain sight. For example, if an officer walking down the street sees a person with drugs in the park, then the officer can arrest that person and keep the drugs as evidence, even if a search warrant has not been obtained. This exception exists because individuals do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy when in plain sight.

Emergency Situation: If the police are chasing a felon and chasing that individual inside a house or other private area, then they do not need a warrant to obtain the evidence that is in sight when entering the building.

For example, a police officer may witness a robbery or assault and start chasing the offender to arrest him or her. If the offender flies and takes refuge in a private residence, then the officer can follow him and does not need to have a search warrant to enter the house or to collect evidence that is in plain view or within the scope of the alleged offender.

Police may also enter a residence without a warrant if they hear a person screaming for help or have reason to believe that a person or property is in imminent danger and that such damage would occur during the time it would take to obtain a search warrant.

Search Incident to Arrest: Officers can search a person body and immediate surroundings when taken into custody. Courts have allowed this exception to the rule of obtaining a search warrant in order to protect officers from subjects who might bring concealed weapons.

Search warrants are a government means of balancing an individual Fourth Amendment rights and society interest in limiting crime and protecting the public. Consequently, the general rule is that a search warrant must be obtained before police conduct a search with exceptions to that rule to protect police officers and society from harm.

Talk to a Qualified Fourth Amendment Rights Attorney Today about unreasonable inspection and seizure

This article is intended to be useful and informative. But legal issues can become complicated and stressful. A qualified Fourth Amendment lawyer on unreasonable inspection and seizure can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a qualified Fourth Amendment rights attorney about unreasonable inspection and seizure near you to discuss your specific legal situation.