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Do police have the right to search my house?

Police raids are back in the headlines again, and if there was even a doubt about who can be raided, we should all know now, it can be anyone. That was always the case, but everyone is on notice now. Do police generally have the right to search you house?

Is there a general right to search your home?

No. In the United States, our homes are protected against unreasonable searches and seizures, and no law enforcement officer has the right to access our home, generally. Of course, there are exigent circumstances that may give them the right to entire, like they are chasing a felon who broke into your home. Generally, a warrant is needed before the police department can enter and search your Gold River, California, home.

What if they do not have a warrant?

If the police do not have a warrant, you do not even need to open the door. No one has a duty to help the police, answer questions or even open the door for them. Of course, you cannot lie to the police, but you also do not have to talk to them when you are at your home. As such, if the police come to your door without a warrant, you can ask them if they have one with the door closed. If they say no, you can simply walk back to what you were doing.

What if they have a warrant?

If they have a warrant, then the police do have the right to enter your home, and it is just a matter of time until they knock down your door. As such, if they say they have a warrant, if you choose not to open the door, they will break it down. And, you may be accused of impeding their search, which itself is against the law.

Once they are in the home, what now?

Once the police enter your home with a valid warrant, there is nothing you can do to stop it. This means your job now is mitigation. Document everything. Get business cards, names and a copy of the warrant. Call your attorney, but most importantly do not interfere and do not talk to the police or consent to anything.

Remember, you do not have to talk with them, and you probably, should not as their entire goal is to get evidence to lock you up. Regardless of what you actually say, they will attempt to twist it against you later.

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