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Is it legal to video tape someone without their consent in North Carolina?

Bethania, NC |

My stepmother has been video taping me and my stepbrother without our knowledge and recently told us she has the tapes i was of course furious i have been planning on making a court appeal to get her and my fathers custody over me revoked i am trying to make a good case for myself and i was wondering if this act as well as verbal abuse is illegal or persuasive to a jury.

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Attorney answers 1


The tapes will in all likelihood inadmissible in court. North Carolina is a one-party consent state, so taping is not illegal...if she is in the room. If the tape is of you and others that know nothing about it, it is not legal. N.C. Gen Stat. §15A-287(a) It is lawful to intercept a communication with the consent of one party to the communication.

However, there are federal issues to worry about. The federal statute convering the interception and disclosure of wire communications is codified at 18 U.S.C. § 2511. The statute is the blueprint for many of the state statutes in this area of the law. It requires one-party consent and states it is not unlawful "for a person not acting under the color of state law to intercept a wire, oral, or electronic communication where such person is a party to the communication or where one of the parties to the communication has given prior consent to such interception unless such communication is intercepted for the purpose of committing any criminal or tortuous act in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States or of any state." 18 U.S.C. §2511(d).

The recommendations in this answer are not considered legal advice for the purposes of ethical evaluation, nor do the create a retention of counsel wherein an attorney-client relationship exists. These recommendations should never be relied upon without first consulting an attorney in your jurisdiction. I am not your attorney, unless we enter into a written agreement fulfilling the terms of that agreement. The comments posted herein are purely for educational purposes and public discourse only.

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