Transmission of Sexually Transmitted Disease
When is a Person Liable for Transmitting Sexually Transmitted Diseases?
Contracting a sexually transmitted disease (STD) is physically and emotionally taxing and can mean being susceptible to contract other sexually transmitted diseases and a higher risk to develop certain types of cancer. STD’s include genital herpes, hepatitis B, the human papilloma virus (HPV), and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
When a sexually transmitted disease is passed from a partner or spouse to an unsuspecting person and the person infected has knowledge of their medical condition they may be legally liable for the damages they have caused the victim by infecting the person with an STD.
Is it Possible to Sue the Person that Infected Another with a Sexually Transmitted Disease?
There are laws that protect the wronged party and in the case of a person being infected with a sexually transmitted disease they may have the legal right to bring a lawsuit for damages. Some of the reasons a legal action may be valid include:
Negligence may be a reason to bring a lawsuit when the infected person’s conduct is below what is considered standard of care. This means the person did not use their legal duty of standard of care in their sexual actions with the person they infected. This is a legal obligation by law to inform their partner of the STD.
In past legal actions the courts have recognized the duty of care in not spreading infection to sexual partners carelessly, such as having sex in a public latrine, or restroom facilities. The ways the duty of care can be considered negligence includes the failure to be diagnosed and treated, failure to use condoms and the failure to abstain from sexual actions. The basis of the claim for negligent transmission of a sexual disease requires the defendant should know or should have known he or she had an STD that was contagious prior to sexual contact with the partner.
They had reason to know or information that he or she had a certain sexually transmissible disease that would make it reasonable and prudent to inform their partner as to negate negligent liability or their duty of care. The negligence can also be used if there was an existence of the disease, medical visits and the use of prescription medications to constitute knowledge as to the presence of the disease.
In some cases when a person is diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease they experience emotional distress in the form of depression, feelings of isolation or guilt. Some people in this situation conduct their behavior recklessly and either intentionally or without malice cause emotional distress to another person by transmitting their diagnosed sexually transmitted disease.
This outrageous or intentional behavior can make the STD diagnosed person liable whether they intended harm to another person or not. In the event the person not conducting him or herself in a competent manner by passing a sexually transmitted disease was unintentional they still can be subject to being held legally responsible, since they should have been aware that their sexual actions would cause physical and emotional harm.
The misrepresentation by a person with a sexually transmitted disease passing it to their partner can be considered fraudulent misrepresentation if they misrepresented the fact that they had the disease and claimed this was false. The partner being told the information was false or unaware the individual has a sexually transmissible disease they are not discussing, but claim they do not may believe the person.
They are relying on the person with the SDT to be honest and forthright in claiming they are free of any sexually transmitted infections. When the person claims they are STD free and is lying this is considered fraudulent misrepresentation. So this is a person misrepresenting the facts knowing they have a sexually transmitted disease. And his or she legally fails his or her duty to disclose the information in order to protect the sexual partner by concealing the fact.
In this event if there is unprotected sex the partner that was unsuspecting they would be infected can bring a lawsuit holding the infected person liable for the injuries and damages caused by their omission of the truth.
Battery as a Tort Claim?
Battery is one of the types of lawsuits that can by brought by a plaintiff in the event they are infected with a sexually transmitted disease. And this is because the act or battery is the intentional, offensive or harmful touching of a person without their consent. This lawsuit is based on “Intent” because the touching or sexual activity by a person with the ability to give the victim a sexually transmitted disease. The victim or plaintiff must prove the defendant intended to cause harm to the victim by transmitting the STD.
Personal Injury Legal Assistance.
Being the victim of a sexually transmitted disease is both physically and emotionally traumatic and embarrassing. If you have been the unsuspecting or intentional victim of a sexual partner infected with an STD you may be entitled to be compensated for the losses and damages that were the result. It is advisable to seek the counsel of a reputable personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal options.
They attorney representing clients who have suffered the emotional, physical and embarrassment of a sexually transmitted disease are well aware of how difficult the situation is and will help you through the legal process to hold the negligent party liable for their actions or omissions.
In the event you have been accused of transmitting a sexually transmitted disease there are defenses that may prevent you from being held liable. The personal injury attorney specializing in this area of the law involving STD transmission can evaluate your claim, advise you of your legal rights and provide representation to protect your rights.
If you have been the victim of an STD by a partner or have been accused of being held liable for transmitting an STD contact the one of the members of lawyer stock, specializing in this area of the law will evaluate your claim and discuss your legal options. Many of these law firms offer free consultations and can be contacted toll-free in many cases.
CDC Executive Summary on STD’s – Click Here.