2021 Georgia Code
Title 16 - Crimes and Offenses
Chapter 11 - Offenses Against Public Order and Safety
Article 3 - Invasions of Privacy
Part 1 - Wiretapping, Eavesdropping, Surveillance, and Related Offenses
§ 16-11-66. Interception of Wire, Oral, or Electronic Communication by Party Thereto; Consent Requirements for Recording and Divulging Conversations to Which Child Under 18 Years Is a Party; Parental Exception
- Nothing in Code Section 16-11-62 shall prohibit a person from intercepting a wire, oral, or electronic communication where such person is a party to the communication or one of the parties to the communication has given prior consent to such interception.
- After obtaining the consent required by this subsection, the telephonic conversations or electronic communications to which a child under the age of 18 years is a party may be recorded and divulged, and such recording and dissemination may be done by a private citizen, law enforcement agency, or prosecutor's office. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to require that the recording device be activated by the child. Consent for the recording or divulging of the conversations of a child under the age of 18 years conducted by telephone or electronic communication shall be given only by order of a judge of a superior court upon written application, as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section, or by a parent or guardian of said child as provided in subsection (d) of this Code section. Said recording shall not be used in any prosecution of the child in any delinquency or criminal proceeding. An application to a judge of the superior court made pursuant to this Code section need not comply with the procedures set out in Code Section 16-11-64.
- A judge to whom a written application has been made shall issue the order provided by subsection (b) of this Code section only:
- Upon finding probable cause that a crime has been committed;
- Upon finding that the child understands that the conversation is to be recorded and that such child agrees to participate; and
- Upon determining that participation is not harmful to such child.
A true and correct copy of the recording provided for in subsection (b) of this Code section shall be returned to the superior court judge who issued the order and such copy of the recording shall be kept under seal until further order of the court.
- The provisions of this article shall not be construed to prohibit a parent or guardian of a child under 18 years of age, with or without the consent of such minor child, from monitoring or intercepting telephonic conversations of such minor child with another person by use of an extension phone located within the family home, or electronic or other communications of such minor child from within the family home, for the purpose of ensuring the welfare of such minor child. If the parent or guardian has a reasonable or good faith belief that such conversation or communication is evidence of criminal conduct involving such child as a victim or an attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to involve such child in criminal activity affecting the welfare or best interest of such child, the parent or guardian may disclose the content of such telephonic conversation or electronic communication to the district attorney or a law enforcement officer. A recording or other record of any such conversation or communication made by a parent or guardian in accordance with this subsection that contains evidence of criminal conduct involving such child as a victim or an attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to involve such child in criminal activity shall be admissible in a judicial proceeding except as otherwise provided in subsection (b) of this Code section.
(Ga. L. 1967, p. 844, § 1; Code 1933, § 26-3006, enacted by Ga. L. 1968, p. 1249, § 1; Ga. L. 1993, p. 565, § 1; Ga. L. 1994, p. 97, § 16; Ga. L. 2000, p. 491, § 4.)Law reviews.
- For annual survey on criminal law, see 68 Mercer L. Rev. 93 (2016). For note on 1993 amendment of this Code section, see 10 Ga. St. U.L. Rev. 109 (1993). For note, "Location, Location, Location: A 'Private' Place and Other Ailments of Georgia Surveillance Law Curable Through Alignment with the Federal System," 46 Ga. L. Rev. 1089 (2012). For comment on Mitchell v. State, 239 Ga. 3, 235 S.E.2d 509 (1977), see 29 Mercer L. Rev. 351 (1977). For comment, "Lawful or Unlawful: Tape-recording Phone Calls?," see 10 Ga. St. B.J. 44 (No. 4, 2004).JUDICIAL DECISIONS
- General Consideration
- Conversations in Furtherance of Crime
- Opening, search, and seizure of mail, 61 A.L.R.2d 1282.
What constitutes an "interception" of a telephone or similar communication forbidden by the Federal Communications Act (47 U.S.C. § 605) or similar state statutes, 9 A.L.R.3d 423.
Permissible surveillance, under state communications interception statute, by person other than state or local law enforcement officer or one acting in concert with officer, 24 A.L.R.4th 1208.