The Police Have Seized My Property or Cash! What should I do?

The Police Have Seized My Property or Cash! What should I do?

If the police took your property or cash they are supposed to give you a Notice of Seizure. This is what is called forfeiture and it’s the beginning of a forfeiture case against your money or property. You sign the form and it will advise you that you have 15 days in which to request an adversarial preliminary hearing to see if the court thinks that there is probable cause to believe that your property or money was used or intended to be used in the commission of a felony, or is proceeds of a felony. You only have 15 days and you must send the request by certified mail. Most people do not know how to make these requests on their own and certainly do not understand the forfeiture laws of Florida to be able to handle this situation without an experienced forfeiture attorney. If you also have criminal charges pending from when they took your money or property you certainly should never go into one of these hearings without an attorney.

The police wrongfully seize money all the time. They think that just because you have drugs with you and what they think is a large amount of cash, the money must not be legal. It is not against the law to carry a large amount of money in the United States of America!

The same thing goes for cars. The police seize them when you get arrested with drugs in the car but the car many not even belong to you. Wrongful seizures of cars or cash can result in the police actually having to pay you back up to $1,000.00 in lawyer’s fees if you win the adversarial preliminary hearing so it’s well worth it to consult with a forfeiture attorney.

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Ray Lopez has practiced since 1990, with prior experience as a Hillsborough County assistant State attorney and lawyer for the Tampa Police Department. He handles all criminal charges, from traffic violations and misdemeanors to serious felonies and federal drug charges. He practices in all state and federal courts of the Tampa Bay area and throughout Florida, as well as criminal appeals, juvenile court, administrative hearings, and civil forfeiture proceedings.

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