What Is The Plain View Doctrine?

Police officers do not need a warrant to seize contraband that is in plain view if the officer is in a place that he or she has a right to be.

EXAMPLE: Officer Doright is standing in your doorway talking to you about the weather. While talking, Officer Doright notices a bag of cocaine and a sawed-off shotgun on your couch. Officer Doright can legally seize these items without a search warrant because they are in plain view.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

Additional Fourth Amendment Unreasonable Search & Seizure Rights Articles

Search LawInfo's Fourth Amendment Unreasonable Search & Seizure Rights Resources