Recording Laws

Adjusters take recorded statements as part of their investigation. There are sometimes, however, when they will record the conversation. This chart outlines the rules regarding consent of recording. A "one party" state usually only requires the consent of one person involved in the conversation; the adjuster is able to fulfill that position. Often implied consent is given in other states by making an announcement that the call is being recorded; it is then incumbent on the other party to revoke permission or consent by asking the adjuster to not record the conversation. Likewise, if no announcement is made and no affirmative consent given, an audible tone may be played for all parties to hear. 

This is important as non-adjusters have begun to record conversations as well; if the first- or third-party claimant is in an "all party" state and does not follow the consent rules, the recording may not be used. 

This chart is current as of the date I wrote it, but adjusters should be familiar with their state’s rules. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of the list. Because laws and regulations can change without notice, an attorney should be contacted if there are any questions regarding this chart. These materials are provided for informational and educational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice or legal opinions because I am not an attorney.

STATE
CONSENT
STATUTE
Alabama
One Party
Ala. Code § 13A-11-30(1) and § 13A-11-31
Alaska
One Party
Alaska Stat. Ann. § 42.20.300(a); Alaska Stat. Ann. § 42.20.310(a)(1); Palmer v. Alaska, 604 P.2d 1106 (Alaska 1979)
Arizona
One Party
Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 13-3012(9); § 13-3012(5)(c)
Arkansas
One Party
Ark. Code Ann. § 5-60-120
California
All Parties
Cal. Penal Code §§ 632(a)-(e); 633.5, 633.6(a), 633.8(b); Kearney v. Salomon Smith Barney Inc., 39 Cal.4 th 95 (Cal. 2006); Kight v. CashCall, Inc., 200 Cal. App. 4th 1377 (2011); Cal. Pub. Util. Code Gen. Order 107-B(II)(A); Air Transp. Ass’n of Am. v. Pub. Utilities Comm’n of State of Cal., 833 F.2d 200 (9th Cir. 1987)
Colorado
One Party
Colo. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 18-9-303 (1)
Connecticut
Mixed: One Party: In-Person All Parties: Telephone
C.G.S.A. §§ 53a-187, -89; C.G.S.A. § 52-570d
Delaware
All Parties
Del. Code Ann. tit. 11, § 2402(c)(4) Del. Code Ann. tit. 11, § 1335(a)(4); U.S. v. Vespe, 389 F. Supp. 1359 (1975)
District of Columbia
One Party
D.C. Code § 23-542(b)(3)
Florida
All Parties
Fla. Stat. Ann. § 934.03(3)(d), (2)(k)
Georgia
One Party
Ga. Code Ann. § 16-11-66(a); Ga. Code Ann. § 16-11-62
Hawaii
One Party
Haw. Rev. Stat. § 803-42(3)(A)
Idaho
One Party
Idaho Code Ann. § 18-6702(2)(d)
Illinois
All Parties (One-Party for “private electronic communications”)
720 I.L.C.S. § 5/14-2(a) (Illinois Eavesdropping Law); People v. Beardsley, 503 N.E.2d 346 (Ill. 1986); People v. Clark, 6 N.E.3d 154 (Ill. 2014). Section 5/14-2(a)(1)(2)
Indiana
One Party
Ind. Code Ann. § 35-31.5-2-176
Iowa
One Party
Iowa Code Ann. § 808B.2 (2)(c); Iowa Code Ann. § 727.8
Kansas
One Party
Kan. Stat. Ann. § 21-6101(1); Kan. Stat. Ann. § 21-6101(4)
Kentucky
One Party
Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 526.020; Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 526.010
Louisiana
One Party
La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 15:1303(c)(4)
Maine
One Party
Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 15, § 710
Maryland
All Parties
Md. Code Ann., Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 10-402 (c)(3)
Massachusetts
All Parties
Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 272, § 99(B)(4); Mass. Gen. Ann. Laws ch. 272, § 99(C)(1)
Michigan
One Party**
Mich. Comp. Laws Ann. § 750.539(c); Sullivan v. Gray, 117 Mich. App. 476, 324 N.W.2d 58 (1982).
Minnesota
One Party
Minn. Stat. Ann. § 626A.02(d)
Mississippi
One Party
Miss. Code. Ann. § 41-29-531(e)
Missouri
One Party
Mo. Ann. Stat. § 542.402(2)(3)
Montana
All Parties
Mont. Code Ann. § 45-8-213
Nebraska
One Party
Neb. Rev. Stat. § 86-290(2)(c); Neb. Rev. Stat. § 86-276
Nevada
Mixed One Party: Oral All Party: Wire/Phone
Nev. Rev. Stat. § 200.620 Nev. Rev. Stat. § 200.650 Lane v. Allstate Ins. Co., 114 Nev. 1176, 969 P.2d 938 (1998).
New Hampshire
All Parties
N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 570-A:2(I-a); New Hampshire v. Locke, 761 A.2d 376 (N.H. 1999)
New Jersey
One Party
N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2A:156A-4(d); N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2A:156A-2
New Mexico
One Party
N.M. Stat. Ann. § 30-12-1(C)
New York
One Party
N.Y. Penal Law § 250.00(1); N.Y. Penal Law § 250.05
North Carolina
One Party
N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 15A-287(a) I
North Dakota
One Party
N.D. Cent. Code § 12.1-15-02
Ohio
One Party
Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 2933.52(B)(4); Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 2933.51
Oklahoma
One Party
Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 13, § 176.4; Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 13, § 176.2
Oregon
Mixed
Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 165.540; Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 165.535
Pennsylvania
All Parties
18 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 5702 to § 5704; Com. v. Smith, 136 A.3d 170, 171 (Pa. Super. 2016); Com. v. Spence, 91 A.3d 44, 44–45 (Pa. 2014).
Rhode Island
One Party
R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 11-35-21; R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 12-5.1-1
South Carolina
One Party
S.C. Code Ann. § 17-30-30; S.C. Code Ann. § 17-30-15
South Dakota
One Party
S.D. Codified Laws § 23A-35A-20; S.D. Codified Laws § 23A-35A-1
Tennessee
One Party
Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-13-601; Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-13-604; Tenn. Code Ann. § 40-6-303
Texas
One Party
Tex. Penal Code Ann. § 16.02; Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 18.20
Utah
One Party
Utah Code Ann. § 77-23a-4; Utah Code Ann. § 77-23a-3
Vermont
No Statute or Definitive Case Law
Vermont v. Geraw, 795 A.2d 1219 (Vt. 2002); Vermont v. Brooks, 601 A.2d 963 (Vt. 1991)
Virginia
One Party
Va. Code Ann. § 19.2-62
Washington
All Parties
Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 9.73.030 Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 9A.44.115(2)(a) Lewis v. Washington, 139 P.3d 1078 (Wash. 2006).
West Virginia
One Party
W. Va. Code Ann. § 62-1D-3
Wisconsin
One Party**
Wis. Stat. Ann. § 968.31; Wis. Stat. Ann. § 968.27; **Wis. Stat. Ann. § 885.365(1)
Wyoming
One Party
Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 7-3-702

Alabama

Alabama is a “one-party consent” state. Its eavesdropping law does not allow the use of “any device” to overhear, record, amplify or transmit any part of the private communication of others without the consent of at least one party engaged in the conversation being recorded.

Alaska

Alaska is a “one-party consent” state. It is a criminal offense to use any device to record communications whether it's wire, oral, or electronic without the consent of at least one person taking part in the communication. Alaska court has held that the eavesdropping law was crafted to prevent third-party initiated communications only; it does not apply to participants in a conversation. This means that in Alaska, one is legally allowed to record a conversation as long as the person takes part in the conversation.

Arizona

Alaska is a “one-party consent” state. It is a criminal offense to use any device to record communications whether it's wire, oral, or electronic without the consent of at least one person taking part in the communication. Alaska court has held that the eavesdropping law was crafted to prevent third-party initiated communications only; it does not apply to participants in a conversation. This means that in Alaska, one is legally allowed to record a conversation as long as the person takes part in the conversation.

Arkansas

Under Arkansas “one-party consent” statute, whether the conversation is in person or electronic, a person must have the consent of at least one party to record the communication.

California

California is an “all-parties” consent state. The statute regulating the recording of oral and electronic communications requires that all parties must agree to be recorded. In cases where a caller in a one-party state records a conversation with someone in California, the Court has ruled that the one-party state caller must adhere to the stricter laws and must have consent from all callers. Even if California is a two-party state, it is also legal to record a conversation if an audible beep is included on the recorder and for the parties to hear. Exceptions: (requires one-party consent) 1) there is no expectation of privacy 2) recording within government proceedings that are open to the public 3) recording certain crimes or communications regarding such crimes to obtain evidence), 4) a victim of domestic violence recording to obtain evidence that the perpetrator violated an existing restraining order and 5) a peace officer recording a communication within a location in response to an emergency hostage situation. According to California's wiretapping law, it is a crime to record or eavesdrop on any confidential communication, including a private conversation or telephone call, without the consent of all parties to the conversation. See Cal. Penal Code § 632.

Colorado

Colorado is a one-party consent state. A person may record an electronic or oral communication if at least one party to the conversation freely consents to be recorded. It becomes illegal if no party to the conversation knows that the communication is being recorded.

Connecticut

Connecticut is a “mixed-parties” consent state. Under General statute § 53a-187, it is a “one-party” consent state where at least one party's consent to record an in-person conversation is required. However, in a civil case “all parties” must consent to the recording to avoid potential civil liability, though criminal penalties do not apply if at least one party has consented to the recording. According to statute C.G.S.A. § 52-570d, the requirements to record a call are the following: 1) consent of all parties in writing before the recording 2) notification that the call will be recorded at the beginning of recording 3) must use automatic tone warning during the call.

Delaware

Delaware is an “all-parties” consent state which means that it is illegal to use any device to record communications, whether they are wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of all parties taking part in the communication. U.S. v. Vespe states that even under the privacy laws an individual has the right to record their own conversations. Under Section 1335, it is a class G felony to intercept a message without the consent of all parties by telephone or other means of communication unless it is authorized by law. Section 2402 also stipulates that it is considered “authorized by law” if a person or one of the parties in the communication gave prior consent unless the communication is intercepted with the intent of committing a felony.

District of Columbia

The District of Columbia is a “one-party” consent state. Under its statute, a person is allowed to record and or disclose the content of a conversation as long as at least one person involved in the recorded communication gave permission.

Florida

Florida is an “all-parties” consent state, meaning all parties to the conversation must have prior knowledge that the communication is being recorded. Secretly recording a conversation in Florida is considered a 3rd-degree felony. Some exceptions where a one-party consent is required are the following: 1) where there is no reasonable expectation of privacy, and 2) a child under 18 years of age who is a party to the communication recording a statement by another party that the other party intends to commit, is committing or has committed an unlawful sexual act or an unlawful act of physical force or violence against the child.

Georgia

Georgia is a “one-party” consent state. Its regulation provides that a person has the right to record or reveal the contents of an electronic, oral, or wire communication as long as they are part of it or if one of the parties has given prior consent to the recording of said conversation.

Hawaii

Hawaii’s “one-party” consent law provides that a person is allowed to record and or disclose the contents of an electronic, oral, or wire conversation when at least one person involved in the recorded communication gave permission.

Idaho

Idaho is a “one-party” consent state and its statute allows a person to record or divulge the contents of an electronic, oral, or wire communication that he is part of or if one of the parties has given prior consent to the recording of the conversation.

Illinois

Illinois' recording law is somewhat confusing. The Supreme Court in People v. Clark, 6 N.E.3d 154 (Ill. 2014) and People v. Melongo, 6 N.E.3d 120 (Ill. 2014) declared that statute § 5/14-2 is unconstitutional since, under this law, it is a crime to intentionally use eavesdropping devices to hear or record all or any part of any conversation, unless done with the consent of all parties or authorized by court order.

In December 2014, the statute was revised to make “eavesdropping” a felony if a person: 1) secretly uses an eavesdropping device to overhear, transmit, or record a private conversation to which he or she is NOT A PARTY unless he or she does so with the consent of all of the parties 2) secretly uses an eavesdropping device to transmit or record any private conversation to which he or she is A PARTY unless he or she does so with the consent of all other parties 3) secretly intercepts, records, or transcribes, any private electronic communication to which he or she is NOT A PARTY unless he or she does so with the consent of all parties to the private electronic communication. Section 5/14-1 defines “eavesdropping” as an offense by using any device capable of hearing or recording oral conversation or intercepting or transcribing electronic communications whether it is conducted in person, by telephone, or by any other means.  The new statute includes language indicating that in order to commit a criminal offense, a person must be recording “in a surreptitious manner.” Therefore, recording of conversations is allowed in public places, such as courtrooms since it is not done secretly. The revised statute requires that all parties to an oral communication must consent to the use of an eavesdropping device for it to be considered legal.

On the other hand, by negative implication, the revised statute also appears to establish a “one-party” consent rule for private electronic communications, by disallowing only a person who is NOT A PARTY to a conversation from surreptitiously using an eavesdropping device to intercept, record or transcribe such communication (e.g., telephone, video conference, etc.). “Private electronic communication” is defined as “any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence transmitted by a wire, radio, pager, computer, electromagnetic, photo or optical system when the sending or receiving party intends the electronic communication to be private under circumstances reasonably justifying that expectation. Hence, the revised statute appears to allow someone who is a party to a telephone or a video conference to electronically record the call even without informing or obtaining any other party their consent

Indiana

Indiana is a “one-party” consent state. Its recording law requires that at least one person involved in the recorded conversation must give consent. A person may also reveal the content of any electronic communication that is readily available to the general public.

Iowa

In Iowa’s “one-party” consent law, a person is allowed to record and or disclose the contents of an oral, electronic, or telephone communication when at least one person involved in the recorded conversation gave permission.

Kansas

Kansas “one-party” consent law does not allow the interception, recording, and or disclosure of any oral or telephone communication by the means of an electronic recording device without the consent of at least one party or if they are a party to the said conversation.

Kentucky

Kentucky is a “one-party” consent state. Its statute provides that a person has the right to record or reveal the contents of an electronic, oral, or wire communication as long as they are part of it or if one of the parties has given prior consent to the recording of said conversation.

Louisiana

Under Louisiana’s "one-party" Electric Surveillance Act, it is illegal to record or disclose an oral or telephone communication without the consent of at least one party or if they are a party to the conversation.

Maine

Maine’s “one-party” consent law provides that a person is allowed to record and or disclose the contents of an electronic, oral, or wire conversation when at least one person involved in the recorded communication gave permission.

Maryland

Maryland is an “all-parties” consent state. Under its Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Act, it is illegal to willfully intercept, record, and disclose any private in-person conversation or any telephone or electronic communication unless the person is a party to the conversation and has prior permission from all other parties. In addition, recording intended for a criminal act is illegal, regardless of consent.

Massachusetts

In Massachusetts’ “all-parties” consent statute, it is a criminal offense to use any device to record and/or disseminate communication, whether it is wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of all contributing parties. However, telephone equipment and or other intercommunication systems which are provided to a phone company subscriber/s and used in the ordinary course of business are not included in the definition of unlawful interception devices.

Michigan

Michigan is a “one-party” consent state. Its law prohibits the recording, interception, use, or disclosure of any conversation, whether in person or electronic or computer-based system, without the consent of all the parties. **Though this may be like an “all-party consent” law, one court has ruled that a party to a private conversation may record it without violating the statute because the legal term “eavesdrop” refers only to overhearing or recording the private conversations of others. The Michigan Court of Appeals has held that the eavesdropping statute is only applied to a third-party initiated conversation so a participant in the conversation has the right to record the same. Michigan’s recording law is often misconstrued as requiring the consent of all parties to a conversation.

Minnesota

Minnesota’s “one-party” consent law allows a person to record or divulge the contents of oral or electronic communication as long as he is present or if one of the parties has given prior consent to the recording of the conversation.

Mississippi

Mississippi “one-party” consent statute makes it a crime to intercept or record any "wire, oral, or electronic communication" unless one party to the conversation consents to the recording of the conversation.

Missouri

Missouri’s “one-party” consent regulation on recording conversation considers it legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or reveal the content of the said conversation.

Montana

It is a violation of Montana’s “all-parties” consent statute to record either an in-person or telephone conversation or electronic communication without the consent of all parties, except under the following circumstances: 1) when the recording occurs in the performance of official duty by an elected or appointed public officials or public employees 2) individuals speaking at public meetings and 3) individuals given warning of or consenting to the recording.

Nebraska

Nebraska is a “one-party” consent state and its statute requires that at least one person involved in the recorded communication must give permission. A person may also reveal the content of any electronic communication that is readily available to the general public.

Nevada

Nevada is a “mixed-party” consent state. It is illegal to secretly record any private in-person communication without the consent of one of the parties to the conversation. For wire and or phone recording, the consent of all parties is required. An exception is when there is an emergency situation where a court order is not possible. In the case of Lane v. Allstate, the Court held that an individual must have the consent of all parties in order to lawful record a telephone communication even if they are a party to said communication.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire’s “all-parties” consent law stipulates that it is a criminal offense to use any device to record communications, whether they're wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of everyone taking part in the conversation. The Supreme Court held that when surrounding circumstances show that the parties knew the communication was being recorded, it is considered an effectual consent.

New Jersey

New Jersey is a “one-party” consent state. Its recording law requires that at least one person involved in the recorded conversation must give consent. A person may also reveal the content of any electronic communication that is readily available to the general public.

New Mexico

New Mexico is a “one-party” consent state and its statute demands that reading, interrupting, taking, or copying of any message requires that at least one person involved in the recorded communication must give permission

 

New York

In New York’s “one-party” consent law, a person is allowed to record and or disclose the content of a conversation as long as at least one person involved in the recorded communication gave permission.

North Carolina

North Carolina’s “one-party” consent law on recording conversation considers it legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or reveal the content of the said conversation.

North Dakota

North Dakota is a “one-party” consent state. Unless the person is recording a conversation for the purpose of committing a crime, it is legal for an individual who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or disclose the content of the conversation.

 

Ohio

Ohio’s “one-party” consent law makes it a crime to intercept or record any "wire, oral, or electronic communication" unless one party to the conversation consents to the recording of the conversation.

Oklahoma

In accordance with Oklahoma’s Security of Communications Act, its “one-party” consent law considers it legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or reveal the content of the said conversation, unless the person is doing so for the purpose of committing a crime.

Oregon

Oregon is a “mixed-parties” consent state. The statute Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 165.535, 165.540. requires the consent of one party for the lawful recording or disclosure of electronic communications. This means that in Oregon one is legally allowed to record electronic conversations with the consent of one party, but requires the permission of all involved to record an oral conversation (in person).

Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania’s “one-party” consent statute considers it an offense to record an electronic or in-person communication without the consent of all parties. However, intercepting or mere listening into a call using a telephone is allowed because the terms “electronic, mechanical or other devices” do not include a telephone. Using a cell phone’s “voice memo” application would be considered a “device” and would be illegal to use.

Rhode Island

Rhode Island’s “one-party” consent law considers it legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or reveal the content of the said conversation unless the person is doing so for the purpose of committing a crime. A person may also divulge the content of any electronic or in-person communication that is common knowledge or public information.

South Carolina

South Carolina is a “one-party” consent state and its law requires that at least one person involved in the recorded communication must give permission.uth 

South Dakota

South Dakota’s “one-party” consent law allows a person to record or divulge the contents of oral or electronic communication as long as he is present or if one of the parties has given prior consent to the recording of the conversation.

Tennessee

Tennessee’s “one-party” consent law considers it legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or reveal the content of the said conversation unless the person is doing so for the purpose of committing a crime. A person may also reveal the content of any electronic communication that is readily accessible to the general public.

 

Texas

Texas is a “one-party” consent state and its law requires that at least one person involved in the recorded communication must give permission. A person may also reveal the content of any electronic communication that is readily available to the general public.

Utah

Utah is a “one-party” consent state. Its recording law specifies that it is a criminal offense to use any device to record or share communications, whether they are wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of at least one person taking part in the communication.

Vermont

It appears that Vermont has no statute regulating the interception of telephone conversations. The state’s case law Vermont v. Geraw, 795 A.2d 1219 (Vt. 2002) does not clearly indicate if Vermont is a one-party or all-party consent state. The court has held that secretly monitoring electronic communication in a person’s home is an unlawful invasion of privacy. In Vermont v. Brooks, 601 A.2d 963 (Vt. 1991), the court refused to find the overhearing of a conversation in a parking lot illegal because that conversation was subject to the eyes and ears of passersby.

Virginia

Virginia’s “one-party” consent law specifies that it is legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an in-person or electronic communication to record and or disclose the content of said communication.

Washington

Washington’s “all-parties” consent states that as long as all parties have permission, it is legal for an individual to record and or disclose the content of any electronic or in-person communication. Exceptions (one-party consent required): 1) where there is no expectation of privacy, 2) recording conversations of an emergency nature, such as the reporting of fire, medical emergency, crime, or disaster, 3) recording communications that involve threats of extortion, blackmail, bodily harm, or other unlawful requests or demands, 4) recording communications which occur anonymously or repeatedly or at an extremely inconvenient hour, or (5) recording communications of a hostage holder.

West Virginia

West Virginia is a “one-party” consent state. Its recording law considers it a criminal act to use any device to record or share communications, whether they are wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of at least one person taking part in the conversation.

Wisconsin

Wisconsin is a “one-party” consent state. Under its statute, it is legal for a person who is present in the conversation or has consent from a party of either oral or electronic communication to record and divulge the content of the conversation unless the person is doing so for the purpose of perpetrating a crime. In Wis. Stat. Ann. § 885.365(1), the recorded communication is “totally inadmissible” in civil cases, except when the party is aware that the conversation is being recorded and that evidence from said recording may be used in a court of law.

Wyoming

In Wyoming where “one-party” consent applies, it is legal for a person who is a party to or has consent from a party of an oral or electronic communication to record and or disclose the content of said communication except if the person is doing so to commit a crime.