Massachusetts Recording Law Summary:
Massachusetts recording law stipulates that it is a two-party consent state. In Massachusetts, it is a criminal offense to use any device to record and/or disseminate communications, whether they’re wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of all contributing parties. Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 272, § 99(C). This means that in Massachusetts you are not legally allowed to record a conversation you are taking part in unless all parties are in agreement.
You may not record conversations without the consent of all involved parties.
In Massachusetts, an appellate court upheld that if a recorded conversation is hard to decipher, but still contains some audible words, such a recording could potentially be in violation of the law. Commonwealth v. Wright, 814 N.E.2d 741 (Mass. App. Ct. 2004). Also, the consent of all parties to a recording is required regardless of whether the conversation took place in public or private. Commonwealth v. Manzelli, 864 N.E.2d 566 (Mass. App. Ct. 2007).
Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 272, § 99(C): Illegally eavesdropping on an in-person conversation or phone call is subject to a maximum fine of $10,000 and up to five years of jail time. Sharing or intending to profit from intercepted communications is considered a misdemeanor, subject to a maximum fine of $5,000 and up to two years of jail time.
Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 272, § 105(c): The dissemination of illegally obtained photos and video recordings is punishable by up to two years of jail time and a $10,000 fine.
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