If you are involved in a divorce, you may want to know if recording phone conversations in New Jersey is legal and if these conversations are admissible in court. This is a complex question and one that requires consultation with a skilled family law attorney. New Jersey phone recording law does not prohibit recording without the consent of the other party involved, but this information may not be admissible in Court. Your family lawyer should be consulted before you press record during any conversation concerning your soon to be ex spouse. New Jersey is not a 2-party consent state, which means that you can record someone without their express consent, but the tricky part about this evidence is that it might not always be admissible in court for the purpose that you attempted to collect it in the first place. Several factors might make your recording inadmissible, or even worse, constitute harassment by you.
What is Not Allowed Under New Jersey Phone Recording Law?
If you have been wondering if recording phone conversations in New Jersey is allowed, you will need to understand the 2-party consent when recording laws and whether those laws are valid in the state of New Jersey. Under two-party consent laws, every party must consent to the recording, even if there are more than two. This prevents you from recording someone without their knowledge.
You cannot do the following when evaluating if recording phone conversations in New Jersey is allowed:
· Install a Secret Recording Device
Even if you are concerned about the safety of another person, including a child, you cannot install a secret recording device in any car, house or laptop that is not your own. For instance, Custody and guardianship can be determined related to evidence that is collected in other ways, but you cannot use secrecy or stalking behaviors to collect information or obtain phone recordings. This is one of the primary reasons that people ask if recording phone conversations in New Jersey is legal and admissible. This action can lead to monetary damages and stalking charges, so you should avoid these actions without first consulting with your attorney.
· The Recording is Collected When The Person Had a Reasonable Expectation of Privacy
You cannot record someone without their consent if they have an expectation of privacy at the time of the recording. Any behavior related to recording conversations or discussions that could be interpreted as stalking or harassment will lead to further charges against the person collecting the recording. This is one of the main things that needs to be considered when you are determining if recording phone conversations in New Jersey is the correct course of action. You will need to be sure that the person you are speaking with and recording does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their surroundings or be under the belief or assumption that they are not being overheard or observed while they are speaking.
· Your Recording is Used for Harassment
Another element that many people overlook when assessing if recording phone conversations in New Jersey can be used for other purposes pertains to delivering the recording to your attorney or the authorities. You cannot use the recording that you have collected to harass the other person before seeking to use it for evidence. You should not be recording anyone for the purpose of luring them into certain behavior or for the purposes of attempting to intimidate them in some way.
Working With a Family Lawyer is Important When Considering Recording Phone Conversations in New Jersey
You will want to be sure that you work with a skilled and experienced family lawyer before you assume that you know whether recording phone conversations in New Jersey is allowed. You can cause significant damage to your own case by recording and breaking the New Jersey recording statute, and if custody or guardianship is involved, your actions could have significant consequences. You will want to be sure that you speak to your family lawyer before you take any action that could invoke the New Jersey phone recording law related to your divorce or custody litigation.
This can be tricky law to navigate, and you will want to involve your lawyer in every decision that is pertaining to the collection of recordings of someone that you are embroiled in litigation with, especially concerning your marriage or your family. Contact the legal team at DeTorres & DeGeorge today for help with your questions about 2-party consent when recording, and let us help you to get the evidence that you need for your case without creating any more issues for yourself.