Arizona Wiretap Law: When Can You Sue for Damages?


Wiretapping is Illegal in Arizona

In Arizona, illegal wiretapping is the unauthorized interception of a wire or electronic communication or a conversation or discussion by one who is not a party to the communication, is not present during the conversation or discussion, or does not have the consent of one party to the communication or conversation. One is a victim of illegal wiretapping if his or her communications have been recorded by a third party without the consent of either party to the communication as outlined in the statute.

Under A.R.S. § 13-3005(A), intentionally intercepting a wire or electronic communication without the consent of either the sender or receiver is a class 5 felony. This statute also criminalizes as a class 5 felony the intentional interception of a conversation or discussion at which a person is not present, or aiding, authorizing, employing, procuring, or permitting another to do so, without the consent of a party to that conversation or discussion. Additionally, this statute makes a class 5 felony intentionally intercepting the deliberations of a jury, or aiding, authorizing, employing, procuring, or permitting another to do so.

A.R.S. § 13-3005(B) criminalizes as a class 6 felony intentionally and without lawful authority installing or using a pen register or trap and trace device on the telephone lines or communications facilities of another person which are utilized for wire or electronic communications.

Good faith emergency interceptions and those made in assisting a law enforcement officer pursuant to a subpoena or ex parte order are exempt from both sections of this statute.

Under A.R.S. § 12-731, victims of illegal wiretapping may bring a civil action to recover from the person or entity that engaged in the violation: 1) preliminary and other equitable or declaratory relief; 2) punitive damages; 3) reasonable attorney fees and other reasonable costs of litigation; and 4) damages in an amount that is the greater of: a) actual damages and profits made by the violator as a result of the violation; b) statutory damages of one hundred dollars a day for each day of the violation; or c) statutory damages of ten thousand dollars. The statute of limitations for a claim under § 12-731 is one year from the date upon which the plaintiff first has a reasonable opportunity to discover the violation.

How a Privacy Law Firm Can Help Arizona Wiretap Victims

Privacy attorneys can help victims of illegal wiretapping by helping to prove all of the elements required for the cause of action in a court of law, and by helping to prove all the harms suffered by the victim in order to obtain just relief from the violator.

By Katelynn Merkin, HopkinsWay PLLC. | © HopkinsWay PLLC 2014. All rights reserved.

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