Four Things You Should Know About Injury Lawsuits For STD Infections
You probably know that you can sue someone for exposing you to a sexually transmitted disease? Before you instigate such a lawsuit, here are four essential facts you ought to know about STD-related lawsuits:
A Criminal Conviction Can Help Your Civil Lawsuit
In some states, a person can be charged with a crime for infecting someone with an STD. In many cases, the guilty party will only face the criminal charge if they had prior knowledge of their infection. The severity of the charges rises if it can be proven that the infection was intentional. If you are pursuing an injury lawsuit, you can use your defendant's criminal conviction as evidence in your civil lawsuit.
You Could Sue Even If You Weren't Infected
You could sue for emotional injury even if you weren't actually infected. This is only possible with serious STD, such as HIV/AIDS. In fact, some jurisdictions even have criminal penalties for those whose conducts expose others to the disease. There is at least one case in memory where a person got a sizable settlement for his emotional stress brought about by exposure to the virus even though he wasn't infected.
Curable STDs Might Not Be Worth Much
Before filing such a lawsuit, it's important to compare its potential cost with the potential settlement. In most cases, you will realize that only incurable STDs, such as herpes and HIV/AIDS, attract sizable settlements. Other curable STDs, such as Chlamydia and Syphilis, are unlikely to bring sizable settlements. It might not be worth your time to instigate a lawsuit where you won't remain with anything after deducting the legal costs; some settlements may not even cover the cost of the lawsuit. Such a lawsuit may only make sense if you want to punish the defendant, in which case you should be ready to fund the lawsuit.
It's Not Just Sexual Partners Whom You Can Sue
Lastly, you should know that your sexual partner isn't the only person you can sue for infecting you with an STD. You can sue anybody whose negligence exposes you to these diseases. For example, you can sue a nurse who negligently infects you with an STD; in this case, your lawsuit will take the form of a medical malpractice case.
Have you been infected with an STD and would like the responsible party to pay? The first step is to consult an injury attorney to review the circumstance of your infection vis-à-vis your state's STD laws. The attorney can then advise you on the possibilities of a lawsuit.
For a personal injury attorney, contact a lawyer such as Charles Aaron PLC.