Skip to Content
Claery & Hammond, LLP Claery & Hammond, LLP
Los Angeles 310-817-6904
San Diego 760-870-4900

Can I Record My Spouse during Our Divorce?

A Legal Team You Can Trust

Pretty much everyone has a device capable of surreptitious surveillance these days – it’s your smartphone! As this tech has become better and better over the years, devices have been able to produce incredibly clear audio and video recordings.

In a particularly contentious divorce, it’s no wonder why someone would want to leverage this technology for their benefit. Secretly recording a spouse’s admission to cheating, hiding assets, or even an outburst all seem like solid enough evidence to help someone in a divorce case – but it could do just the opposite.

Can I Use Recordings in My Divorce Case?

A dispute during a divorce can quickly devolve into a he-said-she-said scenario, so why would hitting the “record” button become a problem? Shouldn’t it help to settle the record once and for all? Not quite.

With regard to wiretapping laws, California is what’s known as a “two-party” state. This simply means that both parties involved in a private conversation must be aware that the conversation is being recorded and consent to its recording.

If someone secretly sets up their phone to record audio and/or video of a private conversation with their spouse, they have broken the law in California. Not only is the recording completely inadmissible as evidence in the divorce case, the spouse who made the recording could be criminally charged for wiretapping.

This is why it’s so crucial for spouses to resist the urge to catch each other in a “gotcha!” moment – doing so won’t help their situation in the divorce case and can backfire with remarkable legal consequences.

How to Legally Obtain Consent for Recording Evidence

If someone insists on recording their spouse, they must gain their consent to record the conversation. Keep in mind, however, that this is still probably a very bad idea for both individuals. In most cases, the best way to gain legally admissible testimony is to have your attorney depose the other party.

A deposition is a formal arrangement where a party answers questions by the opposing counsel. The questioned party can also have their attorney present to provide legal guidance and support. Depositions can be shown in court, but they are often transcribed as written documents submitted during discovery.

You Probably Don’t Even Need Recordings

California is a no-fault divorce state, which means that neither party needs to prove anything to settle the divorce. Violating your spouse’s right to privacy can also put you in a difficult legal situation, possibly even leading to criminal charges. For these reasons, the best course of action is to avoid recording your spouse and let your attorney help you navigate your legal situation.

We at Claery & Hammond, LLP can provide the legal support clients need no matter how contentious or amicable their divorce may be. With our representation, you can have a better shot at getting just what you need out of your divorce settlement.

For more information, contact us online and request a free initial consultation!


Contact Us Today

Put Your Case in Qualified Hands
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.
  • By submitting, you agree to be contacted about your request & other information using automated technology. Message frequency varies. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to cancel. Acceptable Use Policy
  • Featured Los Angeles Times Family Law Practitioners 

  • We Provide Unique, Tailor-Made Solutions for Each Client

  • We Offer a Free Initial Case Consultation
  • Our Team Has Over 50 Years of Combined Experience
  • Our  Attorneys Handle All Types of Family Court Issues
  • We Solely Focus on the Areas of Divorce and Family Law