Monthly Archives

January 2021

what-is-bait-and-switch-when-is-it-illegal

What Is “Bait and Switch” When Is It Illegal?

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia

Bait and switch is a cute term that refers to a nasty con game. If you’re the victim of a bait and switch scam you’ve purchased one item only to be given something that doesn’t match the description of what you purchased. Bait and switch typically involve businesses who use the tactic to lure customers in by advertising a great product at a fantastic price only to provide something that’s quite different.

Identifying That you Were a Victim of Bait and Switch

The FTC has done an excellent job of creating guidelines that clarify when a “bait and switch” situation has happened.

According to the FTC, you weren’t a victim of a bait and switch con if you:

  • Were convinced to buy something different
  • If the seller simply runs out of whatever item they were promoting, especially when the business clearly stated that they only had limited quantities of the promoted item
  • The only way you are a true victim of bait and switch is when the seller clearly had no intention of selling the promoted product.

Bait and switch occurs when:

  • The seller had no intention of parting with the promoted item
  • They fail to be honest about warranties, availability, repairs, description, etc.
  • The do something that actively discourages their sales team from selling the promoted item
  • Simply refuses to sell the bait
  • Fails to honor the terms of the promotion (such as failing to ship the item in a reasonable amount of time causing you to cancel the item or replace it with something else)

Is Bait and Switch Illegal

Bait and switch isn’t just an immoral marketing tactic, it’s illegal. If you have recently found yourself caught in the middle of a bait and switch scam, there are steps you can take to resolve the situation. The first thing you need to do is contact the FTC and file a formal complaint. This alerts them to the situation and triggers an investigation.

While you’re waiting for the FTC to respond to your complaint, find an experienced lawyer who will not only help you understand all the legal terms but who will also do everything in their power to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. If your lawyer decides you have a strong case, they’ll likely encourage you to file a lawsuit and seek out damages.

What you shouldn’t do, is share your experience on social media or leave scathing reviews on the business website. Saying the wrong thing not only could cost you your bait and switch case, but it could also cause the business to file a slander lawsuit against you. It’s in your best interest to stay quiet until the case has been resolved.

youve-been-arrested-for-dui-again

Most Common Crimes in California during Covid-19

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia

One of the more fascinating aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic is watching how it has impacted the crime rates. Not only has the number of arrests changed since COVID-19 was discovered in the United States, but the types of crimes are also different.

When the government first started to shut down, many of us tensed, positive that the changes would trigger a surge in crime. That didn’t happen. During the first few months of the pandemic, crime rates dropped.

It’s difficult to track down just how much crime rates decreased during the early months of the pandemic. The main metric used to determine the crime rate in most areas is the number of 911 calls dispatchers receive. From March 16 through April 22, 2020, nearly every major city reported that 911 calls had decreased. In Chicago, 911 calls decreased by an impressive 25%. In California, there was a noticeable decrease in jail bookings.

Why did the crime rate decrease?

Many suspects that the big issue is that most of the crimes that didn’t happen involved peer groups who got into trouble together. There are two working theories as to why the police weren’t getting called out to investigate these types of crimes. The first is that the gangs were actually adhering to social distancing suggestions. The second is that the people who normally noticed the crimes and reported them simply weren’t out and about.

There are always exceptions to the rules and in the case of crime decreasing during the COVID-19 pandemic, San Jose was an exception. Not only did San Jose’s crime rate increase, but the crimes that were committed were also violent. For example, in 2019 San Jose had a total of 34 homicides. That number climbed to 44 in 2020. Experts are confident that when the numbers are tallied, San Jose commercial property crimes will have increased by a minimum of 4%.

Other California police departments have noticed that the crime rates are starting to increase. They’ve noticed a particular increase in violent crimes.

According to the Los Angeles police department, the most common crimes in California during COVID-19 are:

  • Car thefts increased by 25% during the pandemic
  • Homicides increased by 36% during the pandemic

According to the Los Angeles Police Department, the most noticeable dips were in the reporting of child abuse and domestic violence.

Authorities say instances of abuse didn’t go down, but the overall reporting of abuse for the year is down about 10%.

Gun-related crimes have increased in LA. As of September 5, 2020, the city had experienced an 8.2% increase in shooting victims. Calls that involved someone claiming they had heard shots fired increased by 11.9%.

Many feel that the longer people have to shelter in place and as everyone’s economic situation grows increasingly dire, California’s crime rate will continue to increase.

what-is-a-bail-agreement

What is a Bail Agreement?

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bond News, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia

Most of us have watched enough procedural shows to know that bail is what you pay to be sprung from jail while you wait for your case to make its way to court. Most of us also know that a bail bond agency, like Carl’s Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, is a business that helps you cover the cost of your bail. In most situations, that’s is where our knowledge ends.

Very few people understand that before we can help bail you out of jail you’ll have to sign a bail agreement.

If you’re wondering what a bail agreement is, you’re not alone. It is seldom explained properly.

The bail agreement is a surprisingly simple contract that serves as a binding legal document between you, the Indemnitor, and us, the bail bond agency that wants to help you reunite with your loved ones.

The agreement is very clear. Every single aspect of our relationship is carefully spelled out. The bail agreement discusses the terms of your bail, serves as an agreement that you’ll attend all of your mandatory court dates and lays out the bail payment plan we agree on.

We feel that it’s important that you understand you don’t have to sign the bail agreement right away. Take as much time as you need to review the information and decide if we’re your best option. We don’t want you to do anything you’ll regret.

When you sign a Carl’s Bail Bonds bail agreement, we want you to understand what you’re getting into. We encourage you to not only take our time and carefully read over the agreement but to also come to us with any questions.

Our willingness to discuss every single aspect of our bail bond agreement is just one of the perks you’ll enjoy when you turn to Carl’s Bail Bonds in Los Angeles for help with your bail situations.

We’re renowned throughout California for our excellent service which includes:

  • 24/7 Bail bond service
  • 20% Discount
  • Phone approvals
  • 0% Interest payment plans
  • Free consultations
  • No hidden fees
  • No collateral required for working signers
  • Habla Espanol

Carl’s Bail Bonds in Los Angeles is a family-owned business that has decades of experience helping people just like you. We’ve enjoyed a solid reputation for being a discreet bail bonds service that genuinely cares about our clients. When you contact us, you’ll enjoy working with a California bail bonds agency that has customized payment plans, a great attitude, and outstanding customer service.

Want to learn firsthand how easy we are to deal with?

Do you want a free consultation with a professional bail agent? If so, call (866)855-3186 or click Chat With Us now.

finding-out-if-a-person-has-an-arrest-warrant

Finding Out If A Person Has an Arrest Warrant

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

Whether you’re looking because you’re worried an arrest warrant has been filed against you or because you need to know about a person you’re dealing with, everyone has their own reasons for needing to know how to go about finding out if a person has an arrest warrant.

The most common reasons to find out if a person has an arrest warrant include:

  • You want to know if the police are going to knock on your door
  • You’re worried about what might happen if a traffic cop pulls you over
  • You need to run a background check on a potential renter/employee

The good news is that it’s no difficult to find out if a person has an arrest warrant. All you need is a computer, a reliable internet connection, a third party website that deals with a criminal history, and some basic information about the person you’re researching.

The type of information you need to have when launching your search includes:

  • The person’s full, legal name
  • Their age
  • And the state they’re located in

The only problem is that sometimes you’ll get information about a different person who has the same name and is the same age. If you suspect you’re looking at the arrest record of someone who isn’t the person you’re researching, you may have to whittle down the search by using a precise address.

Once you’ve provided this basic information, you’ll discover an entire treasure trove of interesting information.

In addition to learning if the person has an arrest warrant, you’ll learn:

  • When and where the criminal offenses took place
  • What types of charges the person has dealt with
  • The individual’s conviction history
If they have any outstanding arrest warrants currently sworn out against them

Read More

what-happens-to-debts-of-a-deceased-person

What Happens to Debts Of A Deceased Person?

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

Nothing about the death of a loved one is easy. Not only do you have to deal with your grief and sense of loss, but it also won’t be long before you find yourself trying to straighten out their finances and learning what debts they still owe. Figuring out the finances and making sure all outstanding debts are paid is stressful, time-consuming, and confusing.

The first thing you need to figure out which of your loved one’s debts have to be honored and which became irrelevant when your loved one passed.

Are You Responsible for the Debts?

While very few debts simply disappear when a loved one has passed, it’s unlikely that you’ll have to dip into your own bank account to pay them off. The only time you’ll have to dip into your own money is when you co-signed on a loan with the loved one.

The money from any outstanding debts your loved left behind comes out of their estate. Shortly after your loved one’s passing, public notices are issued. At this point, any creditors you’re loved one owed money to will have to contact you or the lawyer you’re using and alert you to the amount of the debt that’s still owed.

The Estate Enters Probate

Many people mistakenly assume that they’ll collect their inheritance within days of their loved one’s passing. That’s never the case. When you’re loved one passes, everything is put into probate. At this point, the person who has been assigned to act as executor of the will step in and starts managing the estate. If you’re the executor it’s in your best interest to obtain the help of an experienced probate lawyer.

The first thing that happens is that all of your loved one’s assetsthey acquired during their life are collected and valued. In this situation, the only assets that matter are the ones that have monetary value, such as houses, vehicles, investments, jewelry, life insurance policies, and bank accounts. Trinkets and non-valuable belongings can be distributed according to the will. If there’s not a will, the items can simply be divided between family members and friends.

The executor of the will (or the probate lawyer you’ve enlisted) contacts all of the creditors who are still owed money. The creditors have a time frame during which they are allowed to file a claim. If the claim is valid, the debt is paid via actual cash your loved one left or via the liquidation of their assets.

Ideally, there will be enough money to pay off all debts. If there isn’t, high priority debts are the first to be paid.

Examples of high priority debts include:

  • Mortgages
  • Bank loans
  • Student loans
  • Funeral expenses
  • Medical expenses
  • Unpaid taxes

It’s only after these debts are paid in full that credit card debt and personal loans are dealt with.

There are some things that aren’t entered into probate. These are considered “pass outside a will” assets. They include:

  • Life insurance policies
  • Brokerage accounts
  • IRAs
  • 401(Ks)
  • Payable on death accounts

Once all of the outstanding debts are paid off, any financial assets that remain are pooled together and distributed according to your loved one’s wishes.

what-is-required-at-the-time-of-signing-a-bail-agreement

What is Required at the Time of Signing a Bail Agreement

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

One of the first big decisions you’ll have to make following your arrest is which bail bond company you want to work with. If you decide that Carl’s Bail Bonds in Los Angeles is best for you, the next step is signing a bail agreement.

The bail agreement is nothing more than a simple contract that lays out the limits of your bail, explains that you need to attend your court appearances, and outlines the payment plan we’ve designed for you.

The bail agreement uses simple language and is very clear.

Having everything you need at the ready when we present your bail agreement means we can go to work posting your bail so you can go home right away. Not having everything leads to a significant delay.

Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand when you sign your bail agreement

The first thing is 10% of your bail. This is our fee. In exchange for paying us 10%, we pay the court 100% of your bail. Remember, this is a fee. When your case reaches its conclusion, we keep the 10% fee.

Additional things you’ll need include:

  • Driver’s license or state ID number
  • Social security number
  • Proof of employment (if applicable)
  • Current address
  • Collateral (when applicable)

If someone is co-signing for your bail we will also need their information before we can finalize the bail agreement.

We want you to be comfortable with the terms of your bail and encourage you to ask lots of questions before you sign the contract. Once you have been released on bail, you’re free to contact us anytime that you need information about the contract.

Carl’s Bail Bonds in Los Angeles has been helping bail people just like yourself out of jail for several years. We have decades of experience and are the most respected bail bonds business in the region. The list of services our clients enjoy include:

  • 24/7 Bail bond service
  • 0% Interest payment plans
  • 20% Discount
  • No hidden fees
  • Online payments
  • Phone approvals
  • Working signers don’t have to provide collateral
  • Free consultations

We want to help you get out of jail as soon as possible and reunite you with your loved ones. The only way we can do this is if you contact us. When you do, you’ll be delighted with our outstanding customer service.

Do you want a free consultation with a professional bail agent? If so, call (866)855-3186 or click Chat With Us now.

selling-real-estate-without-a-license

Selling Real Estate Without a License

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

Selling real estate seems simple enough. Someone wants to sell their house. You know a few people who would be interested. You agree to act as a broker between everyone. Considering that people sell houses as “for sale by owner” all the time, what can possibly go wrong.

Yes, it’s possible that this could turn into a good deal for everyone, it can also go horribly sideways. While state laws do allow you to sell your house without the aid of a real estate agent, you’re not allowed to step in and act as a broker for another person unless you’ve been properly licensed by the state.

Getting a real estate license in California isn’t necessarily difficult, but it does require some commitment on your part. The state real estate board wants proof that you clearly understand the ins and outs of real estate law.

The State of California won’t issue a real estate license to you until you’ve:

  • Completed a specified real estate course
  • Passed a written exam
  • Undergone a thorough state background check

It is important to understand that California has two different types of real estate license: a license that allows you to act as a real estate salesperson and another that allows you to act as a real estate broker. You won’t be granted a broker’s license until you’ve first obtained your salesperson license. The state won’t even consider your application to become a broker until you’ve obtained a great deal of hands-on experience working as a real estate salesperson.

Failure to become properly licensed before selling real estate has serious legal repercussions. If you’re caught, you could be facing either felony or misdemeanor charges. The punishment often depends on why you were eventually caught, how many properties you ultimately helped sell, and if you have ever been charged with selling a property without a license in the past.

In many cases, you’ll serve time in either jail or state prison. It’s also likely you’ll be required to pay a steep fine, have a probation period, and even be required to do community service. Depending on the situation, you could also have to pay restitution to everyone involved in the case. There’s also a chance that civil charges will be filed against you. It’s unlikely that you’ll ever be allowed to legally sell real estate after you’ve been convicted.

All things considered, it’s best to put in the work and obtain your real estate license rather than trying to take a short cut.

can-employers-force-you-to-submit-to-a-covid-19-test

Can Employers Force you to Submit to a Covid-19 Test?

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

If you’re confused about what your employer can and can’t require of you during this pandemic, you’re not alone. Every other day it seems like some new rules and requirements and expectations seem to intrude on our rights. In many cases, getting a straight answer feels impossible.

Finding out if you have to submit for a Covid-19 test each time you go to work is a perfect example of how many people don’t know what they can and can’t fight. Some lawyers freely admit that they’re not sure how legal this topic is. For a long time, it was common knowledge that employers couldn’t legally require employees to undergo any medical examination that didn’t directly impact their work. COVID-19 has changed things.

Based on what the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has stated, it’s likely that you do have to adhere to your employer’s wishes and be screened for COVID-19. The catch is that when your employer requires that you get the test, they have to do so in a way that stays in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Your employer isn’t allowed to simply declare that you take a COVID-19 test. There are some strict rules that they have to follow. These rules include:

  • Adhering to both federal and California confidentiality laws
  • Stick to reliable tests
  • Understand the possibility of false/positive and false/negative tests and have a plan of action in place

But what happens if the test comes back positive? You’ll have to socially distance which means you can no longer go to work. If working from home isn’t an option, how are you supposed to pay your bills for the two or more weeks you aren’t working?

The good news is that the government has taken the steps needed to make sure you don’t lose your home during this period. If you have to take sick leave because you’ve tested positive for COVID-19, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) stipulates that provided you meet certain criteria, your employer must pay you, provided you’ve tested positive. In many cases, your employer only has to pay for 2 weeks of sick leave. If you have worked for your current employer for at least 30 days and have a genuine inability to work due to caring for a child during the pandemic, you’re entitled to a 10-week leave of absence at 2/3s of your regular salary.

Some employers who employ less than 50 employees are exempt from the required sick pay for COVID-19 victims. If you start feeling unwell or were exposed to COVID-19 it’s in your best interest to sit down with your employer and try to find a solution that keeps everyone safe.

how-tough-are-bail-bonds-enforcement-agents

How Tough are Bail Bonds Enforcement Agents

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

One of the biggest problems the bail bonds industry runs into is that most people have learned about the bail process from television and movies. While these interpretations of the business are exciting and make for fun viewing, they aren’t an accurate representation of the industry.

When most people hear the words bail bonds agent, they immediately conjure up an image of a big, tough guy who will stop at nothing to bring them back to jail. This is not the case at all. Yes, if you fail to make your court appearance, we won’t be happy with you, but that doesn’t mean we’ll adopt a wanted dead or alive type attitude that many people seem to expect.

First, there are limits to what we can and can’t do when you fail to make a court appearance.

The first thing to consider is that we aren’t your only problem when you skip bail. You’re also going to be in trouble with the court. In many cases, failing to appear in court results in:

  • An arrest warrant being issued
  • A failure to appear charge getting filed against you
  • Sometimes driver’s licenses are suspended
  • The amount of any future bail will be raised, or you’ll be denied bail completely

When you failed to make your court appearance, the court contacts us and alerts us to the situation. At this point, we have a set time limit, usually, six months, to make sure you get to court before the court keeps the bail bond we posted.

If the business was just like television, this is the point where we would burst into your home, guns blazing, and take you down. Reality is quite different. Most of the work is done in an office using a computer and common sense. Once we’ve identified your location, we will come to talk to you.

What we’re not allowed to do is:

  • Arrest everybody you’re with. You’re the only person who can be taken into custody
  • Use excessive force, which includes shooting someone
  • Fail to remain professional at all times
  • Carry guns without the proper licenses and permits
  • Break any state laws
  • Put others at risk

If we’re unable to find you and collateral was used to help secure your bail, you will lose whatever you signed over to us. If a loved one co-signed for you, they will be responsible for covering the 90% of your bail that you essentially forfeited. All of these terms are clearly laid out in our contract.

Do you want a free consultation with a professional bail agent? If so, call (866) 855-3186 or click Chat With Us now.

are-you-eligible-for-bail

Are you Eligible for Bail?

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

Getting arrested is terrifying. The goal is to make the process scary enough that you never want to go through it again.

When most people are arrested, their biggest source of fear is that they simply don’t know what will happen. While they’ve heard of bail on television, they don’t understand how the bail process works or if they’re even eligible for it.

If you’ve been charged with a minor crime, you’ll likely find out whether you’re eligible for bail at the same time you’re booked. The booking officer will tell you that you’re being released on your own recognizance or how much your bail bond cost before you’re free to go home. Both situations are the most common.

In extreme cases, the only thing the booking officer will be able to tell you is that you’ll learn more at a bail hearing. If a bail hearing is required you and your lawyer will appear before a judge. The judge will listen to what both attorneys have to say. They’ll also look at your criminal record and how strong a connection you have with the community. Based on what they learn, the judge will determine your bail amount. They will also layout the conditions of your bail.

If you need help covering the cost of your California bail, contact the family-owned bail bond business, Carls Bail Bonds in Tulare. We’ve put together a whole range of services that are designed to make bailing you out of jail and back in your own home as simple as possible.

We offer:

  • 24/7 Bail bond service
  • 20% Discount
  • Phone approvals
  • 0% Interest payment plans
  • No hidden fees
  • No collateral required for working signers
  • Habla Espanol

Carls Bail Bonds in Tulare has been serving California for several decades. Over the years we’ve learned a great deal about working with people like yourself who simply need a little help, communicating with court officials, and guiding everyone through the bail bond process.

We offer free phone and online consultations. During the consultation, you’re encouraged to ask any questions that pop into your head. By the end of the consultation, you should have a full understanding of how bail bonds works and be comfortable with the role we play.

Do you want a free consultation with a professional bail agent? If so, call (866) 855-3186 or click Chat With Us now.

elder-abuse-in-california

Elder Abuse in California

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

Society dictates that we take care of our elders. The idea is that they cared for us when we were too young to fend for ourselves, and now it’s our turn to return the favor. The problem is that some people don’t behave the way that society dictates and commit a crime that’s called elder abuse.

California’s elder abuse laws are designed to protect state residents that have passed their 65th birthday. Most victims are older and no longer able to completely care for themselves.

Elder abuse in California includes:

Elder abuse in California is one of the state’s famous wobbler laws. This means that you could be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. The decision isn’t based on whether the DA is having a bad day, but rather a specific set of criteria.

Elder abuse in California is covered by Penal Code section 368(c). The law is written in such a way that prosecutors have 12 months to investigate an alleged instance of elder abuse before they either have to let the case go or file charges. Anyone responsible for caring for an elderly patient/relative can be charged with misdemeanor elder abuse in California.

If you’re convicted of misdemeanor elder abuse, you could be sentenced to a full year in jail. The rules change in cases of felony elder abuse. One of the big changes is that prosecutors have more time to determine if they should file charges. They aren’t hampered by the one-year time limit. While the prosecutor gets more time to file charges against you, they also have to build a much stronger case.

To convict you with felony elder abuse, the DA has to prove that someone in your care experienced great bodily harm. In most cases, the abuse takes place over a long time, but it can also be a single incident, such as pushing the elderly person you were caring for down a flight of stairs. If you’re found guilty of felony elder abuse, you could spend the next four years in a state prison and also have to pay a substantial amount of fines.

It’s worth noting that there are circumstances that can trigger an even more severe punishment for elder abuse. In these cases, the age of the victim is an important factor. In a felony elder abuse case that involves a person who is older than 70, the judge can add an additional four years to your sentence. If a 70-year-old senior citizen dies as a result of the abuse you inflicted upon them, an additional seven years can be added to your sentence.

Recording in California

Recording in California

By | Bail Bond in Fresno, Bail Bonds in Bakersfield, Bail Bonds in Los Angeles, Bail Bonds in Tulare, Bail Bonds In Visalia, Carls Bail Bonds, Los Angeles Bail Bonds

When most people hear the word recording, they automatically assume that someone is a musician who is in the process of laying tracks. The term recording has a much different meaning to people involved in the California court system.

California has something that is often referred to as a two-party consent law. The main idea behind the law was to limit wiretapping, but in the digital age, it covers a wide array of issues, including using a recorder to create a copy of a phone conversation or videotaping someone without their consent. The issue came up with Kim Kardashian famously revealed that she’d recorded a phone conversation between Kanye West and Taylor Swift.

California’s recording law is covered in California Law Penal Code § 632. It’s part of California’s Invasion of Privacy Act.

The law was originally created to encourage law enforcement to go through the legal channels and really build a strong case against people before filing charges. The hope was that by creating clear-cut recording laws, there would be a decrease in the amount of recorded evidence that was thrown out of trials.

The lawmakers who created the law didn’t really predict that a time would come when everyone would have a high-powered recording device in their pocket at all times. As result, some people unintentionally violated that state’s recording laws.

Unless you’ve received a warrant, you’re not legally allowed to record another person’s conversation without first telling them. It sounds simple enough. The problem is that it’s becoming increasingly easy to accidentally record a conversation. All it takes is having a dashcam that records sound mounted on your car. Another example is accidentally hitting the record button on your phone while you’re talking to someone. The issue has come up a few times when someone was shooting a video of something and accidentally recorded a nearby conversation.

If someone believes that you violated the recording laws, they are allowed to file charges against you. If you’re convicted, you can spend a year in jail and possibly be charged a $2,500 fine. If it’s a repeat offense, the amount of the fine can go as high as $10,000.

The good news is that if it was an honest mistake, it’s likely that the charges will be dropped. The charges will also be dropped if you’re able to prove that the recorded conversation took place in a place where the speakers couldn’t reasonably claim that they could expect complete privacy.