In the United States, the police are not always allowed to enter your home. Citizens do often have the right to refuse entry to the police if they would not like to have the police conduct a search. In some cases, people will decide that they’re fine talking to the police, but they will choose to go outside to do so.
That being said, there are three different ways the police can enter your home. It’s very important for you to know what these are so that you make sure everything happens in the proper fashion.
There is an emergency
The first way that the police can enter your home is if it’s clear that an emergency is occurring. If the home is on fire, officers can enter to try to save lives. If they believe a crime is in process, they may be able to enter to stop it. They may need to show that they had probable cause after the fact.
They get a warrant
Next, the police are able to get a warrant that says they’re allowed to enter a home with or without the permission of the homeowner. Police will often knock on the door and present you with this warrant so that you can read it first. But there are also cases where they just determine that they need to use force to enter a building based on a warrant.
You provide consent
Finally, you always do have the option to give the police the consent that they need to come into your home. If you decide to do so, then they don’t have to show probable cause later, there doesn’t need to be an emergency and they do not have to get a warrant.
If the police do end up coming into your home and you’re facing legal charges, be sure you know what options you have. If it turns out that the search was illegal, that can drastically impact your case.