Call Recording Laws
While we are not legal experts by any means, there are laws we all need to be aware of when it comes to call recording. We have compiled information about call recording law as it applies to each individual state and have presented the information below.
There are important questions of law that must be addressed when it comes to call recording. Both federal and state statutes govern the use of electronic recording equipment. The unlawful use of such equipment can give rise not only to a civil suit by the "injured" party, but also criminal prosecution.
General Call Recording Legal Information
Federal law allows recording of phone calls and other electronic communications with the consent of at least one party to the call. A majority of the states and territories have adopted wiretapping statutes based on the federal law, although most also have extended the law to cover in-person conversations. Thirty-eight states and the District of Columbia permit individuals to record conversations to which they are a party without informing the other parties that they are doing so. These laws are referred to as "one-party consent" statutes, and as long as you are a party to the conversation, it is legal for you to record it. (Nevada also has a one-party consent statute, but the state Supreme Court has interpreted it as an all-party rule.)
Twelve states generally have laws that require the consent of all parties to a conversation. Those states are California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Washington. Be aware that you will sometimes hear these referred to inaccurately as "two-party consent" laws. If there are more than two people involved in the conversation, all must consent to the taping.
Call Recording Law Guide by State
- District of Columbia
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
It is always best to talk with an attorney if you have questions about the legal implications of recording calls in your state. We hope this information will serve as a general guide, and is not intended to substitute for expert legal counsel.
As always, if you have any call recording questions, contact us for a no-obligation consultation with a call recording expert.