Can my employer use audio surveillance?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can my employer use audio surveillance?

I work at a restaurant that installed surveillance
cameras a few months ago. I recently found
out the cameras have audio surveillance. Is
that legal for them to listen to us?

Asked on January 18, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Oregon


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

First of all, is the use of audio surveiallance disclosed in any papers that you may have signed upon hire? If so, and you chose to work there anyway, then your consent as to a policy of audio recording can be implied. If not, then the general rule in OR is that a conversation may only be reocorded if all parties to it give their consent. That having been said, there is an exception. If the conversation takes place in a public area, then there is no "expectation of privacy" so audio equipment can be used. And a restaurant is considered to be such an area.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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