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In a civil forfeiture case harris county what does ORDER OF NON-SUIT SIGNED (Final Order)mean.

Houston, TX |

arrested for pcs >1gm. residue on plastic wrap. i was in a company owned truck, criminal case was dropped, but the money stolen out of my wallet by police under the forfeiture law went to civil court as the burden of proof is less. now judge has issued a final order of non suit. do i need a lawyer? what does this mean?

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A NonSuit is a voluntary dismissal of the civil case without prejudice. It can be refiled within the statute of limitations but is unlikely.
I would suggest contacting the court clerk or attorney who filed the civil case to see if the asset seized (your money) is in the court registry or whether the plaintiff ( police agency who seized it) has it and ask how to have it released and returned to you. This most likely will require a simple Motion and Order. It may have to be done while the court still has plenary power (within 30 days of the final order).
Most criminal attorneys will be able to assist you if you find you need it. Contact the attorney who represented you in the criminal side of this matter. He/she may be willing to assist you or at least walk you through the steps.

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Thank you very much, it's really unfortunate that I get more assistance for free from council in another city than the "lawyer" I paid full fee up front who is less than 5 miles away. Again thank you.


Order of Non-suit means the case has been dismissed by the party bringing the suit. You need to get an attorney and file a motion asking for the return of your cash.

I am not intending this to be legal advice, because I don't know the particulars of your situation. Call me if you would like to discuss this or other isues.

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