Below is an overview of the forfeiture and impoundment process in Minnesota District Court. Read through our Definitions tab for commonly used words, and read through our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for more information about the forfeiture and impoundment process. The Forms tab will help guide you to the forms packets that are available.
What is forfeiture?
Forfeiture is the process that a state agency uses to seize (take) property from an owner after someone is arrested, charged, or convicted of a specific crime. Usually this happens when someone is arrested by law enforcement for driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of controlled substances (drugs) or alcohol or after fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle. The motor vehicle and other property can be seized. Your property, including cash, could also be seized during a drug arrest/raid. Forfeiture of property is a civil issue that is separate from any criminal charges that may have been filed against someone.
Do I need file anything with the court?
If you received a Notice of Seizure and Intent to Forfeit and you want to get your property back, you may need to file paperwork with the court. Sometimes law enforcement or the prosecutor in the criminal case can release the property to you. If you are able to get the property released, then you would not need to file paperwork with the court. You will need to file paperwork with the court if you are unable to get your property back from law enforcement or the prosecutor.
For more information about forfeiture, see the FAQs.