Understanding your search and seizure rights protects you in the event of any criminal investigation. When the police come to your door, they might ask if they can step inside or look around. The way you handle this interaction makes a difference in your case.
What happens if you give the police permission to search?
Anything they find is admissible
When you consent to a search of your property, anything the police find in that search is admissible under the terms of a consent search. Be mindful of this because even seemingly innocent things are sometimes misconstrued in the aftermath of a search.
You can limit their search access
If you agree to a search, you have the legal right to restrict where the police may search. For example, you could permit them to search your living room or your backyard and prohibit access to any other area of your home. Anything found in violation of that consent is inadmissible in court.
You may revoke your consent at will
You might think that, once you give consent to a search, you are unable to change your mind. If you consent to a search and then have second thoughts, you may revoke that consent if you wish and the police must stop searching and leave the premises.
Understand and exercise your rights if law enforcement arrives at your house and asks to search. Consider asking for your attorney’s presence before you answer any questions or allow the police into your home. This protects your legal interests.