Can an adult take pictures of minor children without parental consent if the minors are being mischievious?

I have tenants living in a condo governed by a HOA. There is one lady that lives in the complex, that is taking pictures of the children because they run up to her door and ring the bell and run away. While I agree that this is a nuisance by the children, does she have the right to photograph these children without parental consent?

Asked on August 2, 2012 under Personal Injury, California


Leigh Anne Timiney / Timiney Law Firm

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes, the tenant living in your condo legally has the right to take photos of the children who are coming to her door.  This is happening in a public place, where there is no expectation of privacy and further, it sounds like this is happening on her own property or at her own residence.  She is legally within her right to do this.  

Cameron Norris, Esq. / Law Office of Gary W. Norris

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

This is really general information, but in a public area-- no one has a reasonable expectation of privacy as it relates to haven their photo taken.  So, if you are in a public area your photo can be taken without your permission.  THere is no special rule for children.  Children do not have more privacy rights than adults.  In theory they have the same right to privacy, while in practice they probably have less of a right to privacy. 

In this case if the woman is taking pictures to intentionally annoy or harass the children that could both be a crime and something actionable in civil court.  However, I would suspect she is just trying to take a picture of the little rascals ringing her doorbell because she is tired of it (as I would be too). 

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