In Arizona, you are allowed to record conversations without the other party’s consent. This may provide you with a powerful tool to collect incriminating evidence that may be used in a divorce case. However, there are some issues that you should be aware of before hitting that record button on your phone or other devices.
You must be a party to the conversation
Arizona law only allows you to record conversations that you are directly involved with. For instance, if you are talking to your spouse outside of your home, you can record the contents of that chat without your spouse’s knowledge. However, you cannot tape a conversation between your spouse and another person that is taking place outside of your home.
Your words could cause trouble
It’s possible that you could catch your spouse admitting to hitting your child, drinking while driving or engaging in other egregious activity. However, anything that you say or do could also be used as evidence in your case. For instance, if you slap your spouse after admitting to being unfaithful, you could be charged with assault. If you record yourself damaging your spouse’s property in retaliation for a bad act, that could also be problematic.
Courts don’t necessarily care
The fact that your spouse has a substance abuse issue may be relevant while negotiating a child custody agreement. However, a spouse’s bad behavior won’t necessarily play a role as it relates to dividing property or determining if you’re entitled to spousal support as part of a divorce settlement. Therefore, it may not be worth potentially putting yourself in danger for what may be little or no gain.
Recording your spouse may be an ideal way to gather information that might help you obtain a favorable divorce settlement. For instance, your spouse may admit the presence of a bank account or admit that a certain asset should be considered marital property.