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Vehicle Searches

You might have wondered if a police officer can search your car anytime you're pulled over. Well, under the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, there are limits to when an officer can search your car. The Fourth Amendment protects individuals from illegal searches and seizures. This means that police officers can't randomly search cars or search every car they pull over. Generally, an officer needs a search warrant in order to search a car, but police can search a car without a warrant under certain circumstances. FindLaw's Vehicle Searches section focuses on when police can search a vehicle without a warrant. There are additional sections on what to do during a traffic stop and a section dedicated to frequently asked questions about traffic arrests.

Learn About Vehicle Searches

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