Michigan’s Eavesdropping Law Explained
In the state of Michigan, laws against eavesdropping have been around a lot longer than most people realize. The technology of the past (or lack thereof) made eavesdropping an issue that most people never had to worry about. Today, however, we have the ability to record audio and video from a multitude of devices, namely from our cell phones. Today’s technology has allowed everyone to have the ability to easily record audio and has put the Michigan eavesdropping statute into sharper focus. The Michigan eavesdropping statute makes it a felony to use a device to record another’s private conversation or to help someone else do so. If you are a party to the conversation, only one party has to know or give consent to the recording for the recording to be legal. This means that you can secretly record your conversation with someone else as long as at least one person that is present in the conversation, in this case you, consents to it. A prosecutor also has to prove that the recording was done intentionally. Many devices record things automatically, so a prosecutor may have a problem proving intent in a given eavesdropping case. In a previous blog, we discussed that a conviction for eavesdropping carries up to two years in state prison and a fine of up to $2,000. If you are facing a criminal charge for eavesdropping, then it is important to speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.