It’s essential to understand audio and video recording law when conducting surveillance in your state. Most states have some type of wiretapping and video recording regulations in place, and West Virginia is no exception. Before conducting surveillance for your residential or commercial purposes, here’s what you need to know about West Virginia’s audio and video recording laws (updated in 2023).
Audio Recording Law
West Virginia is a one-party consent state when it comes to audio recording, meaning that if you intend on recording a conversation, at least one person in the conversation must consent for the recording to be legal . If you’re a participant in a conversation, you can be the one person to consent to the recording.
However, there are two exceptions to this rule. The first is that you can’t have any criminal intent when recording people for it to be legal. The second is that if people are communicating in a public space where they wouldn’t expect privacy, it is legal to record them without asking for consent first.
Video Recording Law
If you’re planning on conducting video surveillance in West Virginia, this practice is generally legal as long as it’s done in a public place. However, you cannot record a person in a place where they would expect privacy, such as in a restroom or dressing room . Violators of this law can face fines of up to $100,000 and up to one year in prison.
While you can legally record video in public places without consent, if a person asks you to stop recording them, you should stop. The exception to this rule is recording police officers doing their job. However, if your recording is interfering with their job, this is when it becomes an issue.
Know What’s Legal
Conducting business surveillance is legal in West Virginia as it’s done in a public place. However, for residential surveillance, following guidelines about not filming people where they expect privacy, such as in their own homes, is important. Have questions about whether your surveillance setup in West Virginia is legal? Contact us at Surveillance Secure today to find out!