Iowa Recording Laws

Iowa Recording Law Summary:

Is Iowa a One Party Consent State?

Iowa recording law stipulates that it is a one-party consent state. In Iowa, it is a criminal offense to use any device to record communications, whether they are wire, oral or electronic, without the consent of at least one person taking part in the communication, as long as the recording is made without any criminal intent. Iowa Code Ann. § 808B.2. This means that in Iowa, you are legally allowed to record a conversation if you are a contributor, or with prior consent from one of the involved parties. Iowa Code Ann. § 727.8.

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Personal Conversations:

You may not record conversations that you are not a part of without the consent of at least one party.

If you are a third-party and require consent from the parties taking part in the conversation, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) states that you may gain consent to make a recording by:

  • Getting verbal or written consent prior to the recording being made.
  • A verbal notification being played before the conversation begins. (For example: “This phone call is being recorded for quality control purposes…”).
  • An audible beep tone being repeated at steady intervals during the duration of the conversation.

Iowa Video Recording Laws

Intentionally viewing, photographing, or filming another person for sexual gratification purposes is considered invasion of privacy under all of the following situations:

  • The person concerned does not consent or is unable to consent.
  • The person concerned is fully or partially nude.
  • The person concerned is fully or partially nude and has a reasonable expectation of privacy.

For example, filming a person who is dressing in a changing room is illegal because that person has a reasonable expectation of privacy.

Iowa Code Ann. § 709.21(4)


Iowa Code Ann. § 902.9: Iowa’s Interception of Communications statute provides that felony charges can carry penalties subject to a $7,500 fine and a maximum of five years in prison.

Iowa Code Ann. § 903.1: Iowa’s eavesdropping and hidden camera privacy laws provide that serious misdemeanor offenses carry penalties subject to a $1,875 fine and a maximum of one year in jail.

Iowa Code Ann. § 709.21(6): Persons who violate Iowa’s video recording laws may be found guilty of an aggravated misdemeanor which carries an imprisonment not exceeding 2 years and a fine ranging from $625 to $6250.

More Iowa Laws

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