Search and seizure of materials could lead to a criminal case. That’s why it’s important to realize who can allow police to search your home. Police officers can typically search the home of an owner who provides consent but you’re probably curious about what happens if another person allows the police officers to have a look instead.
Courts generally base their determinations on what is an allowable search of a home by considering that an unreasonable search is the presumption of any home search without a warrant. However, there is one critical exception to this and that is consent. Police usually don’t require a warrant in order to inspect a home when another person who appears to have the authority to allow them to come in to do so.
When a homeowner agrees to the police searching the premises, any information obtained from the search with be legal and allowed into evidence. However, when someone outside of the homeowner consents to the search, this can raise prominent legal questions. Even occupants who do not have full rights over the premises can give police the legal justification needed to search parts of the residents via consent. For example, your roommate can give consent to search common areas and his or her individual rooms.
A guest who doesn’t live in the home but has joint access to parts of the home can authorize the police to search those parts. Whether or not children can allow the police to search a home depends on the individual circumstances. Any consent from a housekeeper is usually classified as invalid. If you have questions about whether or not the evidence obtained in a recent home search is allowable in court because of who told the police they could come in, schedule a consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney today.
Do you think you were already subjected to an illegal search? If so, you need to talk to a qualified attorney. Atlantic City lawyer John W. Tumelty can help you at 609-345-3300 or via his online contact form.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.