What Can the Government Seize?
As highlighted above, forfeiture is not limited to funds made from illegal activity. Law enforcement has the right to seize vehicles, bank accounts, expensive jewelry, real property, and business profits, too. Something many small business owners do not know is that all deposits over $10,000 must be reported to the Bank Secrecy Act. If you fail to report a significant deposit, or regularly make smaller deposits, your bank account could be frozen or seized entirely. This is because business owners who make frequent small deposits are often flagged for trying to evade the system, and thus, are viewed as suspicious. The problem is that these business owners are typically just making routine deposits, not attempting to cover up any illegal activity.
How You Can Fight Back
Forfeitures, especially those without an accompanying criminal conviction, must be handled delicately. After all, government officials — the same people who took your belongings — will be the ones determining whether or not you get them back. For this reason, it is important that you hire an attorney who is familiar with the intricate nature of forfeiture cases.
I have personally represented many cases of both criminal and civil forfeiture, and I’d love to help you attain success in your case, as well. I have extensive experience negotiating with government agencies involved in asset forfeiture, and I understand how these types of cases are often won. Reach out to my office for a case evaluation to learn more about the process.