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Sam, Attorney at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 27011
Experience:  More than 20 years of experience practicing law.
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Hi, my neighbor harasses me whenever I am in my yard. I recently

Resolved Question:

Hi, my neighbor harasses me whenever I am in my yard. I recently started taping her and have a good 30 minutes of this which includes her cursing and making defamatory remarks. She is on tape daring me to hit her-deriding me for not being a man because I won't. To all this I have made no replies. She has told many neighbors that I am harassing her. (untrue) She is a school teacher and people apparently believe her. She is ruining my reputation. I would like them to hear this tape of her. If I give this to them could she sucessfully sue me for defamation of character? She is the only one talking on the tape. Jerry
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Sam replied 8 years ago.



she cant sue you for defamation of character - because that is based on untruths - and cameras don't lie, right? however, under FLA law, all parties must consent to the recording or the disclosure of the contents of any wire, oral or electronic communication - recording or disclosing without the consent of all parties is a felony. so if she did not give her consent to the taping and, certainly the dissimenation of the contents, she could charge you criminally. you can use this link to read that law

Customer: replied 8 years ago.

I have already checked into fla. statute ch. 934.03 which reads: "Under the statute, consent is not required for the taping of a non-electronic communication uttered by a person who does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in that communication."


I also read elsewhere that if my recording device is located anywhere in my front yard, that is an area where there is not a reasonable expectation of privacy for my neighbor.


Please look these matters over and let me know. Greatly appreciated, Jerry

Expert:  Sam replied 8 years ago.



i caution you about releasing the tape to anyone - in 934.02 it states


2) "Oral communication" means any oral communication uttered by a person exhibiting an expectation that such communication is not subject to interception under circumstances justifying such expectation and does not mean any public oral communication uttered at a public meeting or any electronic communication.


my interpretation is that the exceptions are in regard to open meeting laws - and while you can have a security camera or film what is going on your property - there should have been notice given to her that she was being recorded - and that should appear on the tape - and then if she continued that is considered consent.



Customer: replied 8 years ago.

I have a sign in the front yard that says; "property under surveillance by video and audio"

and I've read that this is all that is required in my front yard.

Thanks, Jerry

Expert:  Sam replied 8 years ago.



again, i do not think the law protects you if you dissiminate the contents of the tape - that is my opinion and interpretation of the law -


have you thought about seeking a protection order -you can go to the clerk of your court in your county and ask for the petition form - fill it out, state about the harassment, making detailed accounts and seek that - if that is issued and then violated the neighbor can be arrested.

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