Border Search Of Cellphones May Need Justices' Input

By Sarah Martinson (July 2, 2020, 5:14 PM EDT) -- American travelers are uncertain of what rights they have when border agents ask to search their cellphones, especially after conflicting rulings from circuit courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court may be the only forum where travelers can get certainty.

Border agents can search travelers' belongings at U.S. ports of entry without warrants under an exception to the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. However, the Eleventh Circuit answered the question of whether this exception applies to cellphones differently from the Fourth and Ninth Circuits, and the question is also pending before the First and Fifth Circuits.

While the Eleventh...

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