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Should You Record your Conversations with Caranua?

I was away from my keyboard earlier this evening and missed this chat with a Member

just got an email from caranua, they are refusing to listen to any recorded conversation, curiouser and curiouser.

Caranua refusing to respond to legal correspondence....Next appointment on tuesday next.

The appointment refers to seeing a Legal Adviser!

There has been a lot of discussion as to whether or not you should record conversations with Caranua?

So Read on >

Q&A: What are the legal implications?

Thu, Mar 27, 2014, 06:31


Source  -


Ruadhán Mac Cormaic 


Is It illegal to record a phone call?
Not necessarily. Under Irish law, it is not illegal for a person to record a call if he/she is party to that call. However, under the Postal Packets and Telecommunications Messages (Regulation) Act 1993, recording a phone conversation between other people without their authorisation amounts to interception – a serious criminal offence.

What form of authorisation is needed?
The 1993 Act permits the recording of phone calls provided that either the caller or the receiver consents to it. This is why, for example, when you ring your bank or insurance company, an automated voice informs you that you may be recorded. No breach of the law occurs in that situation as you are deemed to consent to the recording if you stay on the line. If there was no such warning when calls were made to or from Garda stations, one legal source says, a breach of the Act may well have occurred.

In what circumstances can gardaí legally intercept calls?
The Minister for Justice can give a three-month authorisation, by written warrant or orally in exceptionally urgent cases, but only for the purposes of a specific criminal investigation or in the interests of the security of the State. Specific conditions, set out in legislation, must be met. The Act provides for applications to be made by the Garda Commissioner or the chief of staff of the Defence Forces in writing. The application goes to a nominated officer who considers it at first instance and then passes it up to the Minister. Such authorisations are subject to review by a High Court judge.

What is the penalty for unlawfully intercepting communications? 
It’s a serious offence. On summary conviction, the fine can be up to €800 and/or imprisonment for 12 months. On indictment the fine can be up to €50,000 and/or imprisonment for five years.*

What about data protection law?
The Data Protection Acts state that a person’s information should only be collected lawfully, fairly, for specific purposes only, and that it should be retained for no longer than necessary for those purposes. Those principles would be breached if gardaí were engaged in blanket recording and retention of calls, particularly without informing the individuals concerned.

What if gardaí were recording conversations between suspects and their lawyers? 
Such discussions have legal privilege and could never be used as evidence in court. If phone calls between solicitors and their clients were being listened to, it would come close to “perverting the course of justice”, one legal source said.

Could there be implications for cases involving disclosure? 
Yes. Gardaí and the Director of Public Prosecutions have an obligation to furnish to defendants any material that is of relevance to their case and the courts have interpreted this broadly, one lawyer said. If a person called to a Garda station to speak to a garda about a case, that communication – if recorded and retained – should be the subject of the normal disclosure procedures. A criminal lawyer says this week’s revelations could lead to many applications for disclosure of such calls, with potentially wide-ranging implications for live or pending cases.

Could convictions be set aside? 
One of the Government’s concerns is that live cases could be jeopardised or that convictions could be deemed unsafe as a result of the recordings. For example, if a person could show he/she was convicted in circumstances where gardaí were in possession of secretly recorded information that tended to help the defence but did not disclose that information, a conviction could be set aside.

*This article was edited on Thursday, March 27th, 2014 

Then there's this >

Thursday, December 06, 2007


Admissibility of recorded telephone conversations?

The Barristers' Professional Conduct has made an interesting ruling on the admissibility of telephone conversations recorded by one party. (The decision was in 2006 but appears not to have attracted much attention then.) From the Sunday Business Post:
The Barristers Professional Conduct Tribunal has ruled that a recording of a phone call by a barrister allegedly racially abusing his Romanian client is admissible in proceedings for professional misconduct...

The Bar Council is investigating claims that the barrister, who was acting for the wife, divulged private information about him in a phone call to his secretary. The woman tape-recorded the remarks...

The barrister’s counsel argued that the tape was inadmissible because it had been made without his consent, so was in breach of the Postal and Telecommunications Services Act 1983.

He also claimed that it violated the barrister’s constitutional right to privacy and breached the European Convention on Human Rights. But the tribunal ruled that the 1983 act had been amended by the Interception of Postal Packets and Telecommunications Messages (Regulation) Act 1993.

Under that legislation, a telephone conversation can be legally recorded by one of the parties involved, without the other’s consent. Tribunal chairman John Gleeson SC said:
"The fact that one party to a telephone conversation records it does not, in the opinion of the tribunal, give rise to a constitutional difficulty or a breach of the European Convention on Human Rights.

"After all, a party to a telephone conversation is always capable of giving evidence of the contents of that conversation without any recording apparatus, whether by making a contemporaneous note or by simply recalling in evidence what was said during the conversation."

René Rosenstock has more discussion of the legal issues associated with recording telephone calls in Ireland. The Data Protection Commissioner has a case study on the data protection issues involved here.

(Many thanks to Ronan Lupton for pointing out the Sunday Business Post story.)

Views: 226

Comment by Rob Northall on November 15, 2016 at 20:35

Found this interesting

Tom Young Moderator
11-Oct-2009 20:27 #2

There is nothing wrong with the recording of the conversation simpliciter.

However, where no consent is ascertained it would generally not be correct to allow such a recording be used in the context of a trial or litigation, unless it can be proved or proven that the act of recording was subject to some sort of qualification or privilege. The question boils down to admissibility of evidence in litigation.

There has been circumstances where recordings have been committed to writing and sworn and admitted as documents in the context of trials, and I have seen an instance where recordings were admitted to evidence in the context of the Barristers disciplinary tribunal.

Recording telephone calls and interception is a thorny/controversial area and there has been cases on it: Herrity v ANP; Kennedy and Arnold v Ireland; and the ECHR case of Copland v UK.

There is an unenumerated right to privacy derived from the constitution Art 40.3. and to be frank it would be a difficult one to ground unless the subject matter of the recording was to damage your privacy rights to the extent that significant damage would accrue as a result.

EDIT: The ECHR Act 2003 and the Convention is only subject to judicial notice, but Article 8 - Privacy, also applies.

Was the customer permitted to record a concerstaion between the two of us without my consent in Irish Law?

Yes, but he could not use the recorded content without your consent.

Is this an infringement of my privacy and has he committed an offence ( I feel completely disturbed by the fact that someone I dont know has a recording of my voice which he could do anything with)?

No, as you were acting under the employ or as an agent of your employer.


You can read it in Context and the rest of the Thread  @

Comment by micheal on November 15, 2016 at 20:46

Personally i wont even accept a phone from caranua i insist on email communication only, as you say it is long standing practice in caranua to chop and change make it up as they go along, i would dare them to prosecute, if they are that self deluded that they dont understand how that would play out bigger fool them. Coming up on 3 years waiting on caranua what a service.

Comment by shep on November 16, 2016 at 11:13

Listen up, for two years I have been in written correspondence with them, I also recorded some conversations, wheather they want to listen to them or not, is not relevent, what is, is the fact that in ireland it is legal, they, they other party can dispute the content in a court of law, it is unfortunate that we have to resort to this, as for me, I have not spoken to them for two years, my last mail to them was yesterday, recently I copied it all, it took two ink cartrages, and my printer has not been the same since. More importantly, a conversation between two people, wtihout a third part is hearsay, and has no bases in law. Do not use the phone when dealing with any entity you are unsure of, also, do not use external mail, always use e-mail, in is internal and elecronice and dated, it is also quicker. think before you write, edit and rewrite, get your dates in order, get a paper trial going, make sure that if they are going to call, they tell you first by mail, them record the conversation, do not say you are recording, unless they ask, keep calm when you are in conversaion, ask all your wuestions, always be polite. best advive

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