Criminal Defense Attorney Chattanooga

Chattanooga Forfeiture Property Seizure Attorney

Concerned About Losing Property Through Seizure or Forfeiture?

Federal and Tennessee forfeiture laws allow the government to seize personal property and assets believed to be connected to criminal activity. The police can take your house, car, boat, jewelry and cash, without paying for it, even if you haven't been charged with a crime. They can keep your property for as long as they want. You'll need to file a claim to try and get it back.

Generally under Tennessee law, you have 30 days to respond to a notice of seizure or notice of forfeiture proceedings. If you don't respond within 30 days, you may not even have a chance to fight for the property the government is threatening to take away.

Your Rights Under Tennessee Law

Tennessee Code: Asset Forfeiture Statute: T.C.A. 40-33-201 et seqs for asset forfeitures to deter crime by taking the profit out of it. Therefore, the government works to take anything that might have been illegally used or obtained. In addition to Tennessee forfeiture law, there are other forfeiture categories contained in federal laws, including those dealing with drug crimes, tax evasion, money laundering, forgery and pornography. In particular, there are a number of forfeiture laws related to drug trafficking and cultivating drug plants on a parcel of land.

Defenses may include third-party "innocent owner" exemptions, meaning that the property owner didn't know the property was illegally obtained. Or, the owner of a rental property or land didn't know that a tenant was conducting illegal activity on the property. The prosecutor in these cases would have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the property owner was unaware of the property's illegal nature.

If your property has been taken by the government, or you've received a notice, you have the right to fight back. The same right applies if you didn't receive a notice, but saw it published in the newspaper. You must act immediately to make sure your rights are fully protected! And, you must follow the best strategy and correct procedures to successfully address the property seizure.

Property Subject to Forfeiture

All of the following are related to the manufacture, possession, sale and/or distribution of controlled substances/drugs:

  • The controlled substances - drugs themselves

  • Raw materials and equipment involved with production or distribution

  • Containers

  • Records and research products

  • Vehicles and other conveyances involved

  • Money or other "things of value" furnished or intended to be furnished in exchange for a controlled substance

  • Real property and real estate

The Right Forfeiture Lawyer Makes All the Difference

Chattanooga criminal defense lawyer John McDougal is an experienced forfeiture lawyer who provides aggressive representation in any type of forfeiture proceeding.

We Will Pursue Any and All Options to Secure Your Property

  • Immediately challenging any asset or property seizures

  • Filing the appropriate court documents that challenge the government's forfeiture case against you

  • Hiring forensic accountants and other experts who can show that the money used to purchase your property came from legitimate sources (also known as clear and convincing evidence)

  • Locating and preparing witnesses who can support your case

Get a Free Consultation - Call Us today at (423) 756–0536

We will meet with you and your family to privately and confidentially discuss the specific facts of your forfeiture case. You can also use our contact email form to request a free confidential consultation, for any questions you might have and to schedule an appointment.