Does a search warrant need to be raised or notarized to make sure that the date doesn’t get switched around or that is was just signed?

I’ve just seen the warrrant after 7 months.

Asked on March 26, 2011 under Criminal Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A search warrant only needs a judge's signature--that's what makes it legal. There is no need for a notary (judge's signatures on any sort of legal or court order do not need notarization) or for some sort of raised seal. If there's no judge's signature, or if the order was signed after the search was already done, or the search went beyond what was authorized by the warrant (e.g. searched a different piece of property), etc., there could then be a legal problem with it, that might invalidate the search and exclude evidence obtained thereby; but if it was a validly signed warrant, signed in advance, based on probable cause, and the search complied with it, it is most likely valid.

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