Most people who are pulled over by police officers earn an honest living. It might surprise you to learn that the authorities sometimes seize the assets of these hardworking individuals during a traffic stop. Asset forfeiture is supposed to be a way that the state can intercept assets that were garnered through illegal activities, but there are many cases in which the assets never intersected with criminal matters.
We know that you never thought that being honest about what assets you had on your person during a traffic stop was going to result in the police taking what you worked hard to earn. If this happens, we need to start working on the asset forfeiture defense that you will use right away. In these cases, the burden is on you to show that you didn’t obtain the assets, usually money, through illegal activities and that it was never involved in a crime.
An asset forfeiture defense is best done as soon as possible after the seizure. There are many options that we might be able to use, and there are three that are more common than others. These include:
- Claiming that your Fourth Amendment rights were violated
- Arguing that your Eighth Amendment rights are being violated
- Using an affirmative defense that claims even if the assets were involved in criminal activity that you didn’t know about those activities
Since this is such a serious matter, we need to start working on the strategy you will use immediately. Remember that these cases often move quickly. In some cases, you will have as few as 30 days to prove that your assets shouldn’t have been taken.