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Recording In-Person Conversations in Colorado
Colorado Revised Statutes Section (C.R.S. 18-9-304) states that “any person not visibly present during a conversation or discussion commits eavesdropping” by knowingly overhearing or recording a conversation. This means that you can record your own conversations, and ones where you are visibly present, but you cannot, for example, hide in a closet for the purpose of recording a conversation, nor can you leave a recorder hidden while you leave the room.
Recording Conversations in the Workplace
Most conversations you are aware of in the workplace probably involve you, so most times recording conversations and/or phone calls with your employer is legal in Colorado. So recording your boss at work without their knowledge might be the best way to legally obtain evidence of discrimination.
The situation may only practically allow you to get audio evidence with a phone recorder turned on in your pocket or purse, but it can still provide solid evidence to help with your case. If problems arise during group meetings, and you are part of those meetings, it is legal for you to record those, as well.
Unless your company has specific rules in place against the practice, it’s fine so long as you aren’t planning on doing anything illegal with the recordings, like blackmailing someone or selling company secrets. And if you want to be 100% sure that your recording will be legal, just say “Do you mind if I record this?” and start recording.
Recording Phone Calls
C.R.S. 18-9-303 criminalizes “wiretapping,” which is knowingly intercepting or eavesdropping on telephone calls. However, it is not illegal on your own call – the statute has an exception for the “sender or intended receiver of a telephone or telegraph communication.”
Recording Interstate Communications
While it is legal in Colorado to secretly record conversations you are part of, this only applies if all parties are physically present. If you are in another state during the conversations, you have to check with that state’s laws. Or, if you are recording a phone call with someone who is in another state, the laws of both states apply.
Recording conversations in many states is illegal unless all participants know and consent to the recording. These states are referred to as “all-party consent” states.
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