End Civil Asset Forfeiture in Tennessee! Restore Individual Rights and Due Process!

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Civil asset forfeiture (CAF) consists of state and federal laws that allow government agencies to seize and keep private property that is suspected by a government employee of being involved in criminal activity. Unlike criminal asset seizures, CAF do not require the property owner to be found guilty or even charged with a crime to lose their cash, car, home, or other property.

Tennessee is one of the worst states when it comes to protecting property rights from CAF. In our state, government must establish by only a preponderance of evidence, which has included a government employee’s suspicion as sole justification for private property being seized. This is opposed to the principles of beyond a reasonable doubt and innocent until proven guilty.

In Tennessee, the average person harmed by CAF will have $502 in value seized from them, most are not able or willing to spend thousands to hire a lawyer. The process to prove your innocence can take more than a year in some cases.

CAF can happen to almost anyone and does happen to tens of thousands of people in Tennessee. All that is needed is one government employee’s suspicion, anyone to conduct criminal activity on your property without your knowledge, a false alert by a dog, or just being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It violates your individual right to due process and property. It also violates the United States and Tennessee Constitutions.

In 2000, the United States government passed CAF reform legislation and, in the late 1990s and 2013, Tennessee passed reform legislation. Despite these attempts, the abuses of CAF have continued.

The only solution is the abolition of civil asset forfeiture in Tennessee. Fortunately, there is legislation to do this in the Tennessee House and Senate. Please support efforts to pass a no compromise bill and restore due process and our individual property rights. Please sign the petition and join the campaign to help end CAF in Tennessee. Your voice matters!