As a business leader you care about customer experience, frankly, you have no choice but to care in today’s environment. One report found that the average consumer tells nine other people about positive customer service experiences, and tells sixteen other people about negative experiences.

That’s why over 60 percent of business leaders are focusing on customer experience according to a recent study by Deloitte.

In order to provide prospects, clients, or end-users with truly outstanding customer experiences, your people need to be mentally present on calls. That doesn’t mean simply using canned talk-tracks or typing furiously into a CRM to document the conversation. It means actually listening to the person on the other end of the phone.

To do that, you’ll have to provide your people with some sort of telephone recording system. It’s the only way to ensure that operators are able to document calls, while also giving employees the latitude to listen carefully.

But as with most things these days, telephone recording is a highly regulated business practice that can result in legal or at the very least, PR troubles if your organization doesn’t follow the rules.

Fortunately for you, this article reviews telephone recording laws in a few of the largest markets to help business leaders safely implement telephone recording software the right way.

United States Phone Recording Laws

According to 18 U.S. Code § 2511, it is a federal crime to record telephone calls between two or more parties without at least one party’s consent. For example, if your organization records phone calls between an employee and a customer and neither the employee nor the customer know that the call is being recorded, your business is in violation of a federal law.

At the very least, you must inform one party that phone calls are or may be recorded. This is what’s known as “one party consent” in legal parlance and it is standard in most states.

Twenty-two states have developed an even stricter set of telephone recording regulations that require “two party consent.” In such stats, all parties must affirmatively consent to having the telephone call recorded in for the recording to be done legally.

Below is the list of states that currently have two party consent laws:

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • Pennsylvania
  • Washington

To ensure that your organization complies with the latest telephone recording laws, it’s best to regularly review changes to state legislation. For example, last year New York recently passed a stricter telephone recording law that some experts suggest is essentially a two party consent law.

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, telephone recording laws are governed by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, otherwise known as RIPA. The law allows businesses to record conversations without the consent of the other party for specific use cases.

For example, if the business uses telephone records provide proof of a business transaction, or improve personnel performance, the business does not need to notify the person (or persons) on the other end.

However, if the business records phone calls for other purposes, like market research, than the business is legally obligated to notify the caller on the other end. In these instances, the business must inform the caller how the recording will be used and must provide the caller with access to the recording.

Finally, individuals are allowed to recording their own calls for personal use only. So if you are using to record and transcribe calls simply to better recall conversations, that’s perfectly legal to do without the other party’s consent in the United Kingdom.


Canada has strong consumer protections in place under the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA). The regulation requires two-party consent, furthermore, businesses are asked to receive consent from consumers in multiple forms.

For example, businesses could ask callers to dial a specific number to consent to a recording and should then have an agent ask for verbal confirmation before the call is recorded.

Businesses must accurately represent what they will do with the recording, must provide callers with access to the recording, and most provide callers with an alternative form of communication should they decline to consent to having their conversation recorded.


The final question to consider is what businesses should do in circumstances where one party is located in an area that followers more lenient telephone recording laws than the other party. In these circumstances, it’s generally recommended that both parties should comply with the more stringent regulations in order to protect against future liabilities.


Clearly there is merit to recording business telephone calls. Doing so can provide professionals fully transcribed notes while allowing both parties to focus on the conversation, rather than having to worry about write notes manually.

Business leaders that encourage employees to use a telephone recording tool like Jog, should ensure that employees understand the relevant telephone recording laws in order to prevent any legal trouble.

Once brought up to speed, your people will be able to use telephone recording and transcription tools to provide better customer experiences, while also protecting the organization from legal liability.

Categories: Call Notes

Sam Gaddis

Making sense of voice data. Founder of

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