Jump to content

Can You Sue Someone For an STD?


Recommended Posts

Doing some research to help my daughter with a paper for school. The question is simple: Should a person who contracts an STD be able to sue their partner? 5 creditable sources and pro's and con's on the subject. I believe you can and should be able to sue for damages (?) but then that raises the whole question of total disclosure before going into a relationship. Do I have the right or is it MY responsibility to ask my partner if they have an STD or have been tested for HIV? Or do I throw caution to the wind and say "what the hell, who cares?" I'm getting off the subject (my daughter tells me) and should stick with the basic question and not read into it...what say you folks???

Link to post
Share on other sites
peppermintpatty

Dribbles,

Hmmm. This question has been pondered by some of the great thinkers of our time...and greedy personal injury lawyers who don't believe any unfortunate event could be possibly accidental or unintentional I think some states already have some type of law but I heard it was for HIV cases only, and the defendant must prove negligence or intentional, malicious infection by the partner.

Anyway, when it comes to your garden variety of STDs such as herpes, chlamydia or HPV etc. that question opens a real Pandora's box (ahem...pardon the pun). How do we define the crime or the criminal in this case? The violation of an indivdual's right to remain free of infectious disease? The right of a potential partner to be informed of any risk to his or her health? Malicious wounding? Which infectious diseases are considered "weapons"...only life threatening diseases, incurable diseases or disease that causes a person any distress or anguish? Did the one person intentionally infect the other? What exactly are the "damages" and do these damages warrant felony or misdemeanor charges? What is an appropriate punishment or fine for spreading an STD? After all, didn't everyone who has an STD get it from someone else? You could easily make the case that every person with an STD is ultimately a victim of circumstances. No one would choose to get an STD.

If an individual is so concerned about contracting disease that he would consider a lawsuit then the prudent thing to do is have the potential partner get tested before sexual contact. OR come right out and ask.... but answers not always reliable... practice safe sex, use common sense, yaddah yaddah. It all boils down to personal responsibility, ethics and integrity. Enter at your own risk... Casual sex is risky behavior... we're only human... we get caught up in the moment... accidents happen. When we engage in risky behavior, we should be man or woman enough to accept the serious consequences. This is why sexual acitivity is considered adult behavior. I think this insidious victimization and litigious attitude among Americans is going to slowly chip away at our basic freedoms. See, I got herpes from a rapist...he never saw a single day in jail... not for the rape....you know why? because I willingly got into his truck after he offered me a ride home from a party..and I was dressed in a "seductive manner" that's code for an attractive young woman who's dressed in the latest fashion. and please...not ever for the herpes because he "didn't know he had it".... poor thing. :evil:

Now, suppose I know I have herpes but I don't tell my partner and my partner contracts herpes from me. Now my lover sues me for personal inury. You would think he'd have a good case against me but maybe it's not so black and white. Let's pretend his defense can prove I knew I had herpes beforehand because my medical records are subpeonaed ( I'm not well versed in the law so I'm not sure that's even legal). First, I can simply deny that I didn't inform him...(perjury... yeah but some people would do it) he's just a scorned lover who is mad at me...now it's his word against mine. That's not a good, solid case. I can say that I was asymptomatic and didn't realize I was even contagious.What if I was reasonably sure I was not contagious at the time of contact. People with latent viruses are not contagious 24/7. I can claim my doctors told me I was safe as long as I didn't have symptoms (that's exactly what I was told 22 years ago...for real) I can counter by saying that I want him tested for any disease he may have exposed me to. Some people just can't be sure who exactly gave them what, or when for example, with herpes, in the first place. That's because clinical researchers have discovered phenomenon called asymptomatic/atypical viral shedding. If a person is unaware or just plain ignorant of the fact that he or she has a contagious disease who will find this person gulity? Does everyone now have the right to test and sue every consort from their past and those people sue their consorts and so on and so on? Most of these STD lawsuits would be frivilous in my opinion.

What a mess :?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

a law suit is possible

Hi there, just looking over your question and I dont know if you have since received advice. But anyway, yes you can be sued for transmitting an sti/std such as herpes. It can be considered battery - which is basically a harmful or offensive contact to the plaintiff's person. There is existing case law on it and people have won. As for tracing it, your medical records can be compelled by a plaintiff's attorney, and if its in there, you could be a likely candidate. Anyway, it is hard to determine who gave you herpes etc, so that is also a problem for the other person, but not the person transmitting the virus. So I would be careful and tell the person you are with that you have something

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...

i have something in regards to this:

say i had my first OB 2 weeks after contact with my BF i TESTED NEGATIVE thru the blood. The oral exam positive. MY BF tested POSITIVE thru the blood. negative on symptoms. In this case its a good CHANCE he's the culprut. either way. im learning and thinking he might have actually known, if this was the case, and i have been in contact with his ex for more info. if she had it , together with him, and he knowingly spread it to me, then techn wouldnt this apply?

either way im on with it. just putting up a scenario:)

Link to post
Share on other sites

to my understanding , the toughest part would be to prove he knew he had it prior to being with you and that he didn't tell you. There are other threads on this with TONS of information. TOHEALTH has a ton of info, so you would be wise to ask her about this, she could steer you into the right direction.

there has been alot of debate on the subject. Again, you have to prove that your bf willingly gave this to you and KNEW he had it.

I wish I had the balls to go after my ex, but I didn't want to at the time for a variety of personal reasons. I dealt with things in my own way in regards to my ex. I am SURE I could have proved he knew....but again, I chickened out.

Many people would say "oh, well it takes two to tango, etc, ad nauseum." However, each and every case is different. Like I said, talk to TOHEALTH if you ever seriously want to pursue something like this. :wink:

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 10 months later...

no theres no way to tell if the person knows abot it and even if they did how you gonna have prove it you cant get any of that from doc's they are not aloud to say shit even in court then they would get sued

Link to post
Share on other sites

you can but its extremly hard.

there was a case awhile ago about a man that went around sleeping with women knowing he had aids. unfortunalty, the women got it to.

they all sued him, they won.

in my own experience, i took my issue up with a lawyer, and she said it was a pretty damn good case. but i never continued with it, just had to much to deal with at the time, and court is a pretty stressfull thing for me, and would ultimatly cause me obs

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
always searching

I read of one case, I think it was in Louisiana, where a man infected a woman with genital herpes and was successfully sued. Because he KNEW he was HSV positive and because she stated that she would not have had sex with him had she known. The law stated that this was interpreted as sexual assault because without disclosure of the fact that he was HSV positive it was not considered consensual sex. Guilt by omission. I have also read that ONLY HSV or HIV infections would stand up in court because they are incurable and likely to cause a lifetime of damages. HIV cases are stronger for the plaintiff because it is deadly.

Link to post
Share on other sites
no theres no way to tell if the person knows abot it and even if they did how you gonna have prove it you cant get any of that from doc's they are not aloud to say shit even in court then they would get sued

Perhaps in Canada.

But in the US, you are entitled to the defendant's medical records and your attorney can absolutely get them. In the US system attorneys have substantial discovery power.

You don't need absolute proof to file a case or even win a case. In fact, at the time of hiring an attorney you can lack proof all together that a person knew or should have known they exposed you to HSV. The issue is not what evidence you have now for certain, but what evidence you can get by the time of a trial, and a smart attorney understands that.

Finally, before I went to law school, I looked for an attorney for my own case. The range of responses I got was huge. It went from "No, I can't help you." to "This is a million dollar case". Ask 5 American lawyers and you'll get 35 different answers--and those are from attorneys who actually know the law and practice. One should be VERY skeptical of people "advising" on an internet board who aren't even attorneys. They do not know what they are talking about. In cases so thinly litigated as these (relative to some other civil category), half the attorneys don't even know what they are talking about. I almost wanted to find the attorneys who had declined to take my case and send them a copy of the check from my ultimate award.

Link to post
Share on other sites

what if

what if the guy is in the military and knew he had it passed it to you and militay doesnt know he has it. what would you guys do. Would you go to the military or would you just keep it a secret. He told me that it was just a cold sore that would go away and that he still wanted to be with me. I said yeah right im not stupid herpes is a cold sore especially genital. I told him to leave me alone and i broke up with him because he could have told me. He said he didnt know that i was going to get it well neither did i!!!

Link to post
Share on other sites
what if the guy is in the military and knew he had it passed it to you and militay doesnt know he has it. what would you guys do. Would you go to the military or would you just keep it a secret. He told me that it was just a cold sore that would go away and that he still wanted to be with me. I said yeah right im not stupid herpes is a cold sore especially genital. I told him to leave me alone and i broke up with him because he could have told me. He said he didnt know that i was going to get it well neither did i!!!

Cutie,

I'm not sure I'm following all you're saying, but the important part sounds like whatever he may have "thought" about his coldsore and the chance of infecting you is irrelevant under the law. What's important is what he SHOULD have thought or known. Stupidity isn't a defense it turns out.

The military is a strange beast...I'm all for publicity about the bad-behaving/law breaking; but I have no idea what to expect their reaction to you would be. These days in the US, the military isn't even taking care of their own, so I wouldn't anticipate them being particularly cooperative or concerned for you either. I honestly don't know.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I almost wanted to find the attorneys who had declined to take my case and send them a copy of the check from my ultimate award.

I'm intrigued!

Are you able to provide any more details than this, or is that not permissible for some legal reason?

Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm intrigued!

Are you able to provide any more details than this, or is that not permissible for some legal reason?

Do you mean like relay all case details to those declining attorneys? Wow, that’s something I hadn’t even thought of; of course at the time I was just wanting to show them they were knuckleheads for not taking it, and to encourage them to think differently about the next client who might come with the same issue.

If this is what you’re meaning, this is really interesting. The fast answer is no, there was nothing legally to preclude me from “telling all” to those attorneys, as the final agreement did not (as do most cases) include a confidentiality clause prohibiting me from ever discussing the case. I literally could have handed those other attorneys my entire file—including the defendant’s medical records.

But it’s key that the defendant in my case was deceased at the time the case concluded. He was basically the only one with something to hide and therefore the only one with any “privacy” concerns, for example. So he himself would have had to raise an issue about any privacy breach, from me talking after the case, and of course dead folks can’t do that.

My lawyer can never talk about the case and reveal my identity for the rest of his life. But I as a client can talk till the cows come home. I could put the whole thing up on the internet and legally it would be fine. (Right now, of course, lots of tried case details are available on the internet--and in print as public documents.)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I really meant can you disclose any other details on this forum. Although disclosing information to other parties is also of interest to me.

You may have given details about your own case on here in the past, but if you have I've missed it.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I really meant can you disclose any other details on this forum. Although disclosing information to other parties is also of interest to me.

You may have given details about your own case on here in the past, but if you have I've missed it.

Oooohhhh.....whew...:)

Theoretically, I could, though I wouldn't be inclined to at this point. I have disclosed things as some related issue has come up just to inform the discussion with some real life/US legal info, but in the past I never did any "full" A-Z version...I think medically and legally it was so unique, while still exhaustive of the main issues---and unfortunately Hollywood had nothing on me, i.e., the reality was far stranger and more serendipitous than fiction. I'd be more inclined to react to a particular question if anything.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

Not only can you sue they can be charged with battery and reckless endangerment. I know because I am doing it! The attorneys did not want to deal with it because his homeowners don't cover it. But they told me to press charges and told me what to do.

Link to post
Share on other sites
curecomingverysoon

But will you be successful is the question... I will be honest with you.

Firstly, will the courts see HSV as enough to constitute battery and reckless endangerment in your state?

I presume you're talking about suing civilly, not criminally?

Not to be a storm cloud but if you don't have lawyers that are willing to be involved then that does not speak to the strength of the case...

Also many doctors are very unwilling to become involved... have you confirmed with your physician and his physician that they are willing to provide evidence (clear, incontrovertible proof -- most likely a swab test from him). It would be quite a statement for a doctor to state with 100% certainty that what they first saw from you was a primary outbreak that resulted immediately upon his infection of you.

Do you have proof that you were uninfected before him? Do you have proof that he was infected and knew of his infection prior to sleeping with you? And how can a person prove that they did not sleep with anyone else who might have had it as well?

You wouldn't get "beyond a reasonable doubt" criminally and I'm not sure how well you'll do "on the balance of probabilities" in civil court.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, you can sue someone ONLY IF they never told you that they had an STD. My mother and I were having a discussion about this yesterday. She even told me that as soon as your doctor knows that you have a STD, they HAVE to put your name into a database so that you are registered...sounds kind of wack (as if we are inmates or something) but yeah...you can

Link to post
Share on other sites
curecomingverysoon

That is incorrect, your mom is misinformed.

HSV-2 is an unreported condition in all countries, including the United States. Chlamydia, gonorrhea and HIV are all "reportable" STIs but HSV-2 is not -- probably because that would make one fifth of Americans potential criminals. You can sue someone for knowingly giving you any of these "big three" but not HSV-2 (at least to date, there has been very limited success because disclosure is recommended and not required).

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Donate

    If Honeycomb has helped you, please help us by making a donation so we can provide you with even better features and services.

  • The Hive is Thriving!

    • Total Topics
      71,655
    • Total Posts
      484,800
  • 0_unsure-if-it-is-herpes.png

    Nervous about dating with herpes? Skip "the talk" and browse profiles here.

  • Posts

    • vannen2
      Thanks for the answer, Wilson. Sorry for taking long to come back here, didn't really have the time to sit down on my computer and I've been trying to not think much about it.  I took a blood test and I'm waiting for the result. As of now, the redness covers a slightly bigger area and I feel some occasional itches. It definitely isn't herpes but at this point I've already accepted I have something, nothing like this ever happened before and honestly? If anything comes positive, I deserve it.  Maybe I'll come back with a current picture for the people that may end up in this post in the future. I will come back with the results as well, of course! I looked a lot into this forum and other people's stories have certainly opened my eyes to many things in life, so I'm thankful for that too!
    • WilsoInAus
      No problems @AlexUobby those queries are reasonable concerns and I hope these answers give you comfort. Every test has a minimum value (including between HSV-1 and HSV-2 from the same blood sample). This ranges from 0.01 to 0.80 in theory, but in practice more like 0.01 to 0.40. Any value in this range is very likely a minimum value and means an absence of the antibody being tested for. Hence if you get say a 0.3 value on this upcoming test, then the correct interpretation is that it is a minimum value and means no antibodies at all - negative. IgG testing is far from perfect in terms of them being a little too sensitive and generating false positives. This is because although they try and find the best antigen that attracts only an antibody specific to the virus being tested for, this is imperfect and other proteins may be present that attach to the antigen. This is true for all IgG testing. You will also find a very large number of people on this site whose low positives transpired to be negatives.
    • AlexUobby
      @WilsoInAusI know, and I have read a lot of posts recently. And I think I know it better, and it won't just come out on my hand. And I am planning to do another Roche test. The result may come out next week. If it was still positive, does that mean I have herpes? I mean the baseline was 0.06. Or I understand it wrong? And there are still one thing that concerns me so much. In the 6 week test, my HSV I igg was 0.02 and my HSV II igg was 0.06. I know they both were low. I was a little worried that HSV II igg might be on the process of seroconversion, since the HSV II igg was three times large than the other. I know it wasn't logical, but worried. I just don't quite get how they suddenly jump to 1.2 even 1.9 after 6 weeks if there weren't seroconversion. And I saw a lot of people in this forum, and their value almost stay in the same level. And that really concerns me a lot.
    • WilsoInAus
      Hello @Lou_95 and thank you for taking the time and having the bravery to come forward to seek help. I hope you find some assistance and find solace.  What has occurred here happens to many couples and it is important to note that it highly likely that this has absolutely no questions surrounding fidelity etc. The first thing to note is that your assumption is the other way around. When a person has their first herpes outbreak, then it is extremely likely that they have been just infected by the other party. Herpes does not wait around taking its own sweet time to cause an outbreak. When first infected, you are in a sense 'defenceless' against the virus so havoc can be wreaked - well the lesions that you experienced. If your partner is quite sure they have not been infected genitally with herpes in the past, then the most rational explanation is as follows. Your partner may well have an oral HSV-1 infection that causes oral cold sores, even if he has no living memory of cold sores! You hence may have become infected through oral sex about 2-6 days before you noticed the sores. Your diagnosis may have included the type of herpes involved, was it 1 or 2?  If my guess above is right, then you both now carry HSV-1 and cannot technically reinfect each other, or at least give your immune 6 months to get up to full speed. He is now already immune and is incredibly unlikely (if there is any chance at all) of becoming infected genitally). If this is the story, then that's kind if it for you two, no need to worry at all about issues of protection or antivirals etc. However hopefully you have the type data to proceed to that stage quickly. Otherwise it might be useful for an additional test by either you or he or both.  
    • Lou_95
      Hello, I'm new here and was diagnosed with genital herpes 2 weeks ago. I have a lot of questions but dont know where to start. My boyfriend and I have been in a faithful relationship for 6.5 years now, and I just had my first outbreak and he has never had one before. We are unsure of who had it to begin with, I assume it was me considering I had an outbreak first. I feel awkward and weird in my relationship, and sex life now, even though he was very understanding and accepting with the situation. He said it could have been either of us and there isn't anything we can do to change it.. which is true. I dont really know what I'm looking for here, maybe just some advice and others personal experiences with the same situation as myself. 
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.