The Police Have a Warrant to Search Your House: Now What?

If an officer shows you a search warrant for your home or office, it may catch you off guard, and it is important to know what they can do and what you don’t have to do. There are several things you must consider.

First, be aware that the agents have a legal right to be there and search, as determined by a judge. You should not resist or be confrontational because they already have permission to search. They can seize anything they consider to be evidence of a crime, even if it is not expressly mentioned in the warrant. Officers are also allowed to request that you remain in one area of the house or even handcuff you if they feel you pose a danger.

Second, just because the agents are there with a warrant does not mean you have to stay there. The exception would be if you are ordered to do so by law enforcement. Their warrant also does not mean you need to answer questions. You don’t. Just because they have a search warrant doesn’t mean that you’re legally required to answer their questions. And you should never do so without speaking to an attorney first.

Third, it will be important to reach out to an experienced lawyer. You need a lawyer who knows what to do in these situations and can help you. If you have been charged with a crime, you will certainly want an attorney experienced in these matters. If you are not charged but feel your rights were violated, you might want to speak with an attorney as well.

The Cogdell Law Firm is a boutique law firm focusing on large, complex business and criminal financial-related litigation, including white collar criminal defense, securities fraud, health care fraud investigation, criminal appeals and state criminal defense. When results matter most, contact Dan Cogdell at (713) 426-2244 or