Dash cameras have been in the news a lot lately. We’ve seen them displayed on television in various police investigations and even in accidents. Dashcams are mounted either on the vehicle’s windshield or its dashboard. They can randomly record videos of the situation at the back of the vehicle. This article will discuss the issue of legality related to dashcams in the state of Washington DC. 

Washington DC

In Washington State, you can legally mount a small video camera on your windshield that keeps recording for 30 minutes. For example, if you are driving and are involved in an accident, the video will prove that an accident occurred. Secondly, if you are pulled over by a police officer, and he asks you to oblige to a search or other legal action, the video will be your proof that you obeyed willfully. 

Are Dashcams Legal in Washington?

It is illegal to have a dashcam in your car in Washington because it can be used as a distraction while driving. Also, it can violate the privacy of the person who is filming or violate the conversation between people. However, the use of dashcams is allowed in limited cases. For example, if you are a law enforcement officer and you are giving someone a warning. You can legally put it on your windscreen or dashboard camera and collect video footage only when a vehicle is identifiable.

Illegal Actions Related to Dashcams

 1) They are a form of surveillance

Dash cams are explicitly used for surveillance. As time progresses, you will find many people who have been caught using dash cams and have been arrested for it; this is a primary reason that dash cams are banned in Washington and is against the law.

2) The law is not known to the general public

Many people do not know about the ban of dash cams in Washington. If a dashcam is found in your car, the police will confiscate it, and you will spend jail time for the crime of possessing this accessory. 

3) Privacy Concerns

There are many arguments against dash cams. For example, there is the argument that dash cams can capture parts of private conversations between people. Also, some people claim that they can be used for voyeurism.

4) To Keep An Eye On Police

Many people think that dashcams allow them to keep an eye on the police and what they do after pulling them over. However, the law enforcement agency has the right to delete the captured footage. 

5) You Can Use Cell Phone Cameras For Recording

You can use your cell phone camera for recording anything since it is private and legal for you to do so. On the other hand, you cannot use the same accessory while driving because it can be used as a distraction.

Punishment Related to Using a Dashcam

It is against the law to have a dashcam in your car in the state of Washington. If you are caught with a dashcam by the Metropolitan Police in the state of Washington, you will have to pay a hefty fine. The fine for having a dashcam is around $108.

The Legal Use of Dashcams in Washington

The use of dashcams is allowed in limited cases, which includes:

1) The use of dashcams in Washington DC is only allowed when you are a police officer and giving someone else a warning. 

2) The use of dashcams is also allowed when you are involved in an accident related to collisions, and you were not the one who caused it.

3) It is also allowed when you witness an accident, and you were not involved in it.

4) The use of dashcams is also allowed when recording the police officers.

5) They are also allowed to be used for surveillance purposes.

Other States

In some other states of the United States, it is perfectly legal to have a dashcam in your car. In these states, you do not need to worry about being pulled over for having a dashcam. However, if you are caught using it illegally, the police may confiscate it and fine you for using it without permission.

1) Alabama

It is perfectly legal to have a dashcam in your car in Alabama. It is not illegal for you to film the police and other people as they are driving.

2) Arizona

In Arizona, it is perfectly legal to have a dashcam in your car and film what the police are doing as they drive by. The only restriction that prevails is recording private property owned by someone else.  

3) Arkansas

In Arkansas, it is legal to have a dashcam in your car. However, you need to be careful not to infringe upon someone else’s privacy. If you do, then you will be punished for it.

4) Colorado

It is legal to have a dashcam in the car and film the police officers as they drive by. However, it is not allowed for you to record commercial places and other private property. 

5) Florida

It is illegal to have a dashcam in a car in Florida and use it to record people as they are driving and are publicly performing their duties. Your car needs to be clearly identifiable for you to record. 


There are many places in the world where it is perfectly legal to have a dashcam as long as you don’t get caught. People who ask about the law in Washington DC have not been told that it is illegal. The lawmakers only inform them that it is dangerous to have dashcams in your car.

Dashcams are useful accessories for recording your driving. It encourages better driving, and it helps you produce evidence if you are ever involved in an accident or encounter the police on the road. The general public should be informed of the benefits of using dash cams to help people from being victimized by other people. They will also be aware that they can use them safely and legally if they follow all the rules and regulations that apply to these cameras.

Hopefully, this article has provided you with ample information about what the law speaks of using dashcams in cars. Good Day!


Q. What are the specifications of the dashcam?

A. The specifications of the dashcam are given below. The resolution is 640 x 480, while the frame rate is ten fps. It also has a 1/8″ CCD sensor and is optimum for recording evidence related to any accidents, collisions, and any other significant events that occur during your journey.

Q. How long does it take to record?

A. It takes approximately 20 minutes to an hour to fully record when using it, generally with a 32 GB SD card.

Q. What is the difference between a dashcam and a windshield camera?

A. Dash cams are usually small cameras that you can mount on your windshield or dashboard. They record what the driver sees and handles when driving. On the other hand, windshield cameras are large cameras that wrap around car windows and capture videos. You can use a dashcam for recording while driving or from outside the vehicle while you stop at the signal or waiting to turn.