We usually record phone calls to help us remember important everyday conversations. However, did you know that this seemingly simple process can be used to protect yourself? In this article, let me show you how you can record a telephone call to prevent people from harassing you!
NOTE: This article was written for informational purposes only. Laws vary from country to country and state to state. For the most accurate legal advice, please consult a legal professional near you.
Harassment, by definition, is repetitive, threatening, and offensive behaviour thatâ€™s aimed to inconvenience other people. While this definition looks clear enough, it is common knowledge in legal circles that an act thatâ€™s considered as harassment in one jurisdiction may not be considered illegal in another. For this reason, the best way to win a case is through showing conclusive evidence â€“ and thatâ€™s where your telephone call recorder comes into play.
Step 1: Get a suitable phone recorder.
There are a wide variety of phone recording devices in the market today, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. To make sure that your device will do its job, take into consideration your usage patterns, your existing infrastructure and the overall quality of the phone recorder.
For example, if you also plan to use your phone recorder for archiving regular calls, then choose a model that has a longer battery life and larger storage capacity. Of course, you donâ€™t want to run out of space at the time you need it most. For more information, you may read the article entitled â€œHow to Choose the Telephone Recording Device thatâ€™s Right for You.â€
Step 2: Research about existing legislation.
You can record phone calls only under certain circumstances. In the case of the United States, the law varies per state. There are some states that require nothing but your consent, while some states require the consent of all parties. Being in an â€œall-partyâ€ state brings up a ton of complications. Of course, it would be utterly ridiculous to ask your phone-stalker for permission, right?
However, note that there are some all-party states that allows exceptional cases to override their consent laws. For example, California, which is an all-party state, has allowed the infamous Oksana Gregorieva-Mel Gibson phone call recording to be used in court, even if Mel Gibson was not informed that the call was recorded.
Step 3: Learn the nitty-gritty details.
At this point, you may be telling yourself, â€œWell, the phone recording laws in my area are not as lenient as Oksanaâ€™s, so what should I do?â€ Donâ€™t worry! There is a subtle way to get around it. If you happen to be in an all-party state that does not provide any sort of exception, or even if youâ€™re just unsure if thereâ€™s any, thereâ€™s still a way to make your recording legal.
You can record phone calls only if you have total consent, right? If you have the hunch that itâ€™s the stalker calling, start the call with the short phrase, â€œThis call is recorded.â€ If the caller proceeds, then thatâ€™s automatically considered as consent from the calling party. This way, you can still record the call in full compliance with the law.
Can you think of other unusual instances where a phone recording device can help people?
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