1. Ask for the search order or warrant and ensure that it is properly dated,
addressed and authorised.
2. Ask for the identification of each member of the raiding team and note down their
name and designation.
3. Anyone not producing the required identification may be prevented from entering
4. If, body searches have to be conducted, they should be done with due regard to personal dignity. Ladies should be searched only by ladies and in privacy.
5. If there are school-going children in the house, they can be allowed to go to their schools. The team may want to search their school bags, which should be permitted.
6. If you or any other family member has a medical condition, you may call for a doctor in case of a medical emergency.
7. If the raiding team wants to seize certain items of jewellery, you may request them to seal them and retain it at your premises and not carry them away.
8. If any valuables do not belong to you, make that known upfront and also provide the name, address and other details of the owner.
9. Jewellery up to a specified limit (e.g. 500 grams per married lady) cannot be seized.
10. If it is a survey and not a search (the warrant will specify that), the raiding team do not have the authority to seize or take away any valuables and can only take away documents, files etc.
11. Whatever is being seized, make sure they are being properly listed and described and, if possible, have two of your neighbours stand witness to the same.
12. Raids are physically, emotionally and mentally stressful. You must ensure that you and your family are allowed to take meals, medicines etc. at proper times.
13. Call your chartered accountant or lawyer. He may not have the right to explain things on your behalf but he will ensure the raiding party act within their rights.
14. If you are asked to answer questions under oath, remember that any wrong statement would bring you serious harm. Listen carefully and reply with due thought and care.
15 If you do not know something or are unsure, state it that way and ask for more time to furnish the answer.
16. Make sure you sign on and obtain a copy of all statements that are recorded or lists that are made.
17. Provide fullest co-operation to the raiding team.
18. They have an unpleasant task to perform and an adversarial stance will only aggravate the situation.
19. Provide them access to all parts of the house, open up all locked doors, drawers and cupboards as they have powers to break open locks.
20. From a preventive perspective, make sure that you keep proper records of income , assets and wealth for each of your family members including receipts, bills, bank account statements, copies of tax returns etc.
21. Furnishing those during the search operation would effectively mitigate much of the adverse consequences.
22. In case you do go through any intimidation or undignified behaviour, communicate that to the senior tax officers so that they can take suitable action.
23. If you have nothing to hide, the above guidelines will help mitigate some of the trauma of the raid.