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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 5/29/2002 2:00:32 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/29/2002 2:01:44 PM EST by TheRedGoat]
Is it illegal to record a face to face conversation in Texas WITHOUT informing the other party? Several years ago I sought legal counsel prior to going to a 'hostile' meeting with an administrator. I used a tape recorder, but I kept the recorder in plain view. At the time, my faculty association attorney advised me I could conceal the tape recorder, if I wanted, or it could be in plain view. (I left it in plain view because I knew it would make the other guy even more hostile/uncomfortable) Is this still the case? I keep a recorder handy on my desk in case a meeting with a student becomes heated. Keep in mind I am teaching 'mostly' adults now at the community college level, but occassionally I have high school students, under the age of 18, who meet with me in my office. My door stays open during the meetings, but I like to know that there is a recording of what was said. TheRedGoat
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:18:09 PM EST
I left it in plain view because I knew it would make the other guy even more hostile/uncomfortable
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RedGoat, I would think that leaving it in plain view would make the other guy [i]LESS[/i] hostile since he/she knows its on tape. no answer to your legal ? sorry.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 2:40:03 PM EST
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat: Is it illegal to record a face to face conversation in Texas WITHOUT informing the other party? TheRedGoat
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I'd speak with ErictheHun. While I don't think that recording law is his specialty, he may know well more than most on here. Mike
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:01:43 PM EST
Originally Posted By cluster:
I left it in plain view because I knew it would make the other guy even more hostile/uncomfortable
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RedGoat, I would think that leaving it in plain view would make the other guy [i]LESS[/i] hostile since he/she knows its on tape. no answer to your legal ? sorry.
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Well, the guy hit the roof. Was livid that I had a recorder, and was furious that I would not turn it off. He became quite visibly angry, and left the room to call HIS attorney. Every 10 minutes or so he would storm back into the office, ignore me, and storm back out. After 30 minutes, I left. He made a fool of himself on tape. A few days later I had to meet with the Asst. Supt to discuss the previous meeting. I brought my recorder again and HE hit the roof as well. Kinda tells you the quality of professionals, and the nature of their game when they are afraid of a tape recorder, huh? Them: "We are going to ask you just once more to turn that off." Me: "It is a legal right, I will not turn it off." Them: "Then Turn off the laptop." Me: "I have a legal right to take notes. I will not waive my right to make notes." Them: "Get out of my office." TheRedGoat TheRedGoat
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:15:56 PM EST
Yes my good man.. It will piss them off, but thats not why you are trying to record the conversation is it? I'm assuming that you are trying to get something on tape. Im sure they will not say the same things knowing that the recorder is there.... and that the whole point isnt it? Interesting question. I'm also waiting for some one give a solid answer.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 3:57:42 PM EST
In Texas, the law allows you to record conversations [u]as long as one of the parties is aware they are being recorded[/u]. In your case, this is perfectly legal. However, your employer may choose to prohibit such recording, and may even lawfully terminate your employment for doing so (private business is allowed to conduct "at-will" employment). In your specific case, secretly recording a conversation is perfectly legal, although it may be frowned upon by your employer. [(:|)]
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 4:01:12 PM EST
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat: I used a tape recorder, but I kept the recorder in plain view.
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Seems to me that as long as the recorder is in plain view, you should be fine. They can't claim that they were unknowingly recorded, and they have no reasonable expectation of privacy. Now, had you *hidden* it, they could claim entrapment or their expectations of privacy...keeping it in plain view is a good move, IMO.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 4:12:49 PM EST
While keeping the recorder in plain view might be a good idea in some situations, he is not legally bound to do it, and may legally keep it hidden. There is no civil cause in Texas of entrapment, and simply recording an activity does not itself entrap. They also have no legal expectations of privacy if they are having a conversation with the same person that is doing the recording (at least that's how it is in Texas). [(:|)]
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 4:33:20 PM EST
Actually, some interpret this differently. Some will say it depends on how it was recorded. Ultimately, I believe its up to a judge to decide whether or not to allow it to be used as evidence. You could always get a video camera, to record their actions, but some will state you cannot record audio unless they are notified (yes, I was informed of this in TX by a police officer!) Of course, police arrest people for laws they thought were broken, which is why we have a judicial system. They way I see it-- if cops can do it, and selectively turn on and off audio, then get a video camera.
Link Posted: 5/29/2002 6:55:51 PM EST
This has already been interpreted. And the interpretation is that an individual may legally record a personal conversation without the other party to the conversation being aware of the recording. This tenet is already well-established by Texas case law, regardless of the opinion/interpretation of a given police officer. [(:|)]
Link Posted: 5/31/2002 2:38:30 PM EST
Thank You PoliticalScience (and others) for your answers. TheRedGoat
Link Posted: 5/31/2002 6:24:00 PM EST
In Texas, as long as one party is aware of the recording, it is legal. Every phone call on my phone at work is tapes, for confirmation of electrical sales. It's industry standard. It does help in other cases. We can have a copy burned to cd in minutes. A freind at work was quoted some price over the phone, and when he went to get the work done, the guy charged him more, he said you quoted me this. The guy said bs, his manager said we wouldn't quote a price over the phone. My friend said bs, wanna hear the phone call. They thought he was bluffing. He had the cd burned, and took it to them. The manager gave him the price that was quoted, and apologized. Don't know what happened to the worker. WL
Link Posted: 5/31/2002 9:35:19 PM EST
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat: Thank You PoliticalScience (and others) for your answers. TheRedGoat
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TRG - you got problems?
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 9:53:35 AM EST
Originally Posted By 1GUNRUNNER:
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat: Thank You PoliticalScience (and others) for your answers. TheRedGoat
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TRG - you got problems?
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Man, you met me. You KNOW I got problems. [:D] Seriously, no problems here. Just had a student in the office a few days ago, and wanted to record the conversation to CMA. TheRedGoat
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 10:02:41 AM EST
Post from TheRedGoat -
Is it illegal to record a face to face conversation in Texas WITHOUT informing the other party?
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By your use of the word 'illegal', I assume that you are asking me whether it is against the criminal laws of our state, or the federal government to tape a private conversation in person? If that's your question, then the answer, both under Texas and federal law, is no. [b]It is not a crime![/b] If you're asking me whether or not it is against the rules and regulations of the place where you are employed, then you'd have to read their employee handbook, etc. But while they can't put you in jail over it, it may be the catalyst for your removal 'for cause' from your position. Call me, 'cause we need to discuss this more fully before you do anything! Eric The(YouStillGotMyCellNumber?)Hun
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 10:17:51 AM EST
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 10:25:40 AM EST
I'm not a lawyer nor from Texas but in most states so long as one party knows the conversation is being recorded that's legal (phone conversations). If neither party knows the conversation is being recorded then it is a wire-tap. I know of no laws in any state that prohibit open-air (neither copper nor cellular) conversations from being recorded. Further, many people believe that recordings are not admissible in court. There is 'some' truth to that in criminal court but little when it comes to civil court. ---------------------------------------------- I might add that if you're in a 'urinating contest' with someone assume 'YOUR' conversation is also being recorded. ------------------------------------------------ RedGoat, I'm assuming you are in some modest disagreement with some other party or parties. If this is so, you might invest in a recorder that is not obvious - spy shop type gear. Imagine getting the clowns to say something like "Yeah, I did promise you_____________ but prove it !!" (LOL) Or record them threatening physical harm. All more likely accomplished without a visible recording device.
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 10:52:31 AM EST
I am in class right now ETH. No dice on a phone call at the moment. Mojo, aren't you supposed to be working? Subslr, my main concern is with the few 'weirdos' that I occassonally have to meet with in my office. Privacy laws prevent me from discussing grades, attendance, performance in public. In a few instances I have been required to explain to a student that they have been caught cheating and will fail my course. Needless to say, I have had some angry students in my office that have already demonstrated (by cheating) that they are less than reputable individuals. TheRedGoat
Link Posted: 6/3/2002 12:47:37 PM EST
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat: I am in class right now ETH. No dice on a phone call at the moment. Mojo, aren't you supposed to be working? Subslr, my main concern is with the few 'weirdos' that I occassonally have to meet with in my office. Privacy laws prevent me from discussing grades, attendance, performance in public. In a few instances I have been required to explain to a student that they have been caught cheating and will fail my course. Needless to say, I have had some angry students in my office that have already demonstrated (by cheating) that they are less than reputable individuals. TheRedGoat
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Sorry T.R. Goat, I automatically mentally defaulted to some type civil suit. The HUN is your man as I don't have a clue as to how handle students. (If allowable I would probably prominently display the recorder in your case.)
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