Can a landlordlegally videotape something withouta tenant’s consent or knowledge?

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Can a landlordlegally videotape something withouta tenant’s consent or knowledge?

We have been having an ongoing he said/she said dispute between 2 apartments at our complex. Since our office is not on site, we are only able to go by what they all tell us. If 1 of our cleaners happened to be there when it happened, are they legally able to record it for us and show it to us? If not, would the tenants who are involved able to do so?

Asked on August 23, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Iowa

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Videotaping tenants often comes in to play in those "peeping tom" cases we hear about on tv.  There are apartment complexes that have video surveillance cameras (and so then a video recording) on the premises for security reasons and in the public are such as hallways, pool areas, etc.  These are not intended to single out any one person and not intended to ease drop on conversations.  I would be careful.  Although video tapes made by spectators to a spontaneous event are often seen on the news, you would have pre-arranged for the cleaners to single out two tenants.  It borders on the offensive maybe but probably not illegality if it is a public area. Check with you attorney to be sure.  Good luck.


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