South Dakota

South Dakota

Date: 
August 1, 2012

Summary of statute(s): An individual who is a party to either an in-person conversation or electronic communication, or who has the consent of one of the parties to the communication, can lawfully record it. S.D. Codified Laws § 23A-35A-20 (2012).

First Amendment protects access to civil courts in S. Dak.

Kirsten Berg | Secret Courts | Feature | September 13, 2011
Feature
September 13, 2011

In a landmark ruling that grants the media and public a qualified First Amendment right of access to civil trials in South Dakota, the state's highest court held that a trial judge erred in barring access to a trial that settled a familial dispute over a popular area tourist attraction.

Records now presumed public in South Dakota

Corinna Zarek | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | March 20, 2009
Quicklink
March 20, 2009

South Dakota is now on par with most states and the federal government in treating its government records as presumably public rather than non-public.

Short fight for open records in South Dakota courts

Jason Wiederin | Secret Courts | Feature | September 26, 2008
Feature
September 26, 2008

The South Dakota Supreme Court decided last week to seal jury records from the public in a bid to protect personal information and identities.

With the rule change, the court policy went from favoring disclosure to closure: As of Nov. 1, “All records, lists, papers, tickets, and other materials used in all stages of the jury selection process shall be preserved in the custody of the clerk of courts."

S.D. high court won't halt libel suit

Kathleen Cullinan | Libel | Quicklink | July 3, 2008
Quicklink
July 3, 2008

The South Dakota Supreme Court has greenlighted for trial a libel suit against the Argus Leader, declining to step in and declare a disputed 2007 column a piece of constitutionally protected parody.

Former Sioux Falls development head Dan Scott's million-dolllar lawsuit against the newspaper alleges the column, which mocked statements he made during a Chamber of Commerce speech, damaged his reputation.

South Dakota settles lawsuit, agrees to allow exit polling

Jennifer Koons | Newsgathering | Quicklink | May 20, 2008
Quicklink
May 20, 2008

Broadcasting and Cable reports that South Dakota's attorney general has settled a suit filed by a coalition of national news organizations by permanently enjoining the state from enforcing a law that prevents exit polling within 100 feet of a voting place.

The Associated Press, along with CNN, Fox News, ABC, NBC and CBS had argued in the lawsuit that such polling within 100 feet of South Dakota voting locations has been conducted during previous elections.

AP, CNN and others fight S.D. exit-polling law

Jennifer Koons | Newsgathering | Quicklink | May 14, 2008
Quicklink
May 14, 2008

A coalition of national news organizations filed a lawsuit in federal court in Sioux Falls on Monday over a South Dakota law that prevents exit polling within 100 feet of a voting place.

The Associated Press, along with CNN, Fox News, ABC, NBC and CBS contend in the lawsuit that such polling within 100 feet of South Dakota voting locations has been conducted during previous elections.

Judge rules libel case against 'Argus Leader' will go to jury trial

Jennifer Koons | Libel | Quicklink | May 1, 2008
Quicklink
May 1, 2008

South Dakota Circuit Court Judge Kathleen Caldwell ruled this week that a jury ought to decide a libel case between the Argus Leader [Sioux Falls] and the former president of the Sioux Falls Development Foundation.

Open records bill approved by S.D. House

Alanna Malone | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | February 29, 2008
Quicklink
February 29, 2008

The South Dakota House passed a bill that sets up a procedure to resolve disputes over access to government records. If a request is denied, the citizen may appeal to the state Office of Hearing Examiners for review to determine if the records should be released. The bill would make appealing denials quicker and less expensive.

SB186 has already passed in the state Senate, but heads back to the chamber for approval of any adjustments the House may have made.