DOE's Search and Seizure

The feds are coming to inspect your home if you want to sell it, according to regulations buried in cap-and-trade legislation and standards decreed by the Secretary of Energy. But there are numerous legal difficulties inherent in DOE "inspections." Here are a few:First, the regulations purportedly require homeowners to submit to a warrantless search of their property. The result of this inspection ("looking in") of their home would be to condemn real property (fixtures and things attached to the land are real estate in many states) and/or personal property. There has been a controversy about whether so-called regulatory searches require a warrant. But whatever the state of the law is now, one should consider the truth of the words of the Supreme Court in Camara v. Municipal Court, a case about a warrantless regulatory search:We may agree that a routine inspection of the physical condition of private property is a less hostile intrusion than the typical policeman's...(Read Full Article)

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