Forfeiture is a government proceeding whereby a person's interest in real or personal property is confiscated and seized by the government. A person has a right to notice and a hearing before the seizure of the property. Also, since forfeiture is a method of punishment, the Eighth Amendment requires that the forfeiture is not excessive.
The federal government continues to use broad powers of forfeiture to confiscate property it has deemed was obtained through illegal means and to punish those convicted in the criminal courts. Hilder & Associates, P.C., has vast experience in defending clients in both civil and criminal forfeiture cases and in stopping and reversing the confiscation of rights, title and ownership of property by the U.S. government.
A civil forfeiture - whether the case is conducted in an administrative or judicial proceeding - is primarily used to confiscate any property that was used to violate the law and to remove any profits and proceedings gained by the accused violators during the alleged illegal activity. Criminal forfeiture is a proceeding that follows conviction in the criminal courts and is used as a further means of punishment against violators to confiscate property used in the admission of the crime or obtained from proceeds that resulted from the criminal activity.
In some cases, the government overreaches what it believes is tainted property. At Hilder & Associates, P.C., we have helped protected a defendant's innocent property from forfeiture. That way, the defendant's family can stay in homes or continue businesses that have no relationship to criminal conduct. Successfully protecting one's property provides a modicum of security to the defendant's family.
Whatever the method of forfeiture, the Hilder & Associates, P.C. legal team has successfully defended clients against the unjustified forfeiture of personal property that was targeted by federal regulators.
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