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Can the courts or law enforcement force you to leave your state of residence if you are a US citizen.

Vallejo, CA |

We are having an office debate. 2 of my coworkers say that a US Citizen can be ejected from their state of residency for certain crimes. I am telling them that there is NO WAY that can be legal if you are a US Citizen? Who is right my coworkers or myself? If my coworkers are right what crazy code is that under

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Best answer

    The concept you are touching on was once referred to as "outlawry."

    I represented anti-abortion protestors in the 1980's and 1990's and often found courts were more than happy to order out of town protestors to remove themselves from a city or town, but never saw one order an individual to leave the state entirely. It did lead me to research the question and the issue of outlawry.

    The short answer is "no" the courts are not at liberty simply to order one to leave a state.

    That being said, it is entirely likely that judges, prosecutors and police can make a person's life sufficiently miserable that they voluntarily relocate. That's so much more civilized, don't you know.

    This answer is not a substitute for consulting with and retaining the services of an attorney for your legal needs. By providing this answer, I am not entering into an attorney client relationship with you.


  2. No.

    NOT LEGAL ADVICE. FOR EDUCATION AND INFORMATION ONLY. DO NOT RELY ON ANY ADVICE YOU RECEIVE FROM ME OR ANY OTHER ATTORNEY IN THIS FORUM. Legal advice comes after a complete review of the facts and relevant documents and an expressed (written) agreement of representation that forms attorney-client confidentiality. Neither of these two events can occur in this forum. Mr. Rafter is licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the US Federal Courts in Virginia. His answers to any Avvo question are rooted in general legal principles--NOT your specific state laws. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this education exchange. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. Mr. Rafter is under no obligation to answer subsequent emails or phone calls related to this or any other matter.


  3. The right to Interstate Travel for US Citizens is a Fundamental Right, which is subject to strict scrutiny. That means there is already a presumption that restriction is unconstitutional, unless no lesser alternative would work. The Supreme Court of the United States is fairly strong authority on the subject.

    I represent Employers, but I can recommend Worker Attorneys in So Cal if you ask.

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