Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Transmitting Herpes: Criminal Laws & Penalties

Do You Have a Legal Obligation to Tell Your Partner if You Have Herpes?

As a general rule, no, you do not have an obligation to tell your partner if you have herpes. There aren’t any federal or state laws making it illegal for you to not tell a partner about herpes you may have. 

Laws on the topic vary from state to state. That being said, it is typically illegal, civilly and criminally, to knowingly or recklessly transmit an STD. Telling someone you have an STD is not the same obligation as knowingly transmitting an STD. 

The state by state laws for knowingly transmitting herpes.

Alabama law makes it a crime to knowingly transmit an STD to someone else. “Knowing transmission” includes engaging in any activity that would likely lead to someone else becoming infected with the STD. For example, if you know you have an STD and have sexual relations with someone else, you can be charged with transmitting an STD in Alabama. (Code of Alabama section 22-11A-21)
In Arizona, a person with any kind of contagious or infectious disease, including sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea and HIV, could be charged with a crime in some circumstances. (Arizona Revised Statutes section 36-631) The Arizona law does not require that an infected person transmit the disease to someone else. It’s enough to knowingly expose someone else to an infectious or contagious disease in Arizona to be charged with a crime.
Anyone who has any kind of infectious, communicable, or contagious disease in California commits a crime if that person exposes him or herself to others. This crime is punishable as a misdemeanor offense. You also commit this crime if you knowingly expose someone else whom you know has such a disease to other people. (California Health and Safety Code section 120290.)
Connecticut law also makes it a crime to engage in activity that exposes someone else to harm, known as reckless endangerment. It’s possible that a prosecutor could charge someone who exposes another person to a sexually transmitted disease with reckless endangerment because that disease poses a health risk to the victim.
Florida’s laws on the criminal transmission of sexually transmitted diseases apply to anyone infected with specific diseases. The specific diseases include: hancroid, gonorrhea, granuloma inguinale, lymphogranuloma venereum,genital herpes simplex, chlamydia, nongonococcal urethritis, pelvic inflammatory disease, acute salpingitis, syphilis, and human immunodeficiency virus, also known as HIV or AIDS. Any person who knows that he or she is infected with a sexually transmitted disease and who engages in sexual intercourse with someone else commits the crime of unlawful acts in Florida. If you have sexual intercourse knowing you are infected with HIV you commit a first-degree felony offense. If you are infected with any other sexually transmitted disease and engage in intercourse you commit a first-degree misdemeanor offense.
a few Kentucky statutes do criminalize conduct that risks STD transmission. And, Kentucky courts have applied other laws that do not mention STDs to certain conduct by people infected with STDs. Kentucky law defines STDs to include AIDS, HIV, syphilis, gonorrhea, genital herpes, chancroid, granuloma inguinale, nongonococcal urethritis, mucopurulent cervicitis, chlamydia, and any other STD designated by the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services. (KRS 214.410.)
Exposing another person to infection with any other venereal disease is a misdemeanor. It is also possible that deliberate or reckless transmission of these diseases would subject the actor to other criminal charges, such as assault or aggravated assault, depending on the circumstances.
The crime of felony assault is committed by intentionally or knowingly inflicting “serious bodily injury.” Any injury that creates lasting impairment or a risk of death is considered serious bodily injury. For example, the transmission of HIV or herpes, which are both incurable, might be considered serious bodily injury. The transmission of a curable STD, such as gonorrhea, might be considered bodily injury.
;In Nevada, a person who is infected with any contagious disease in an infectious state (including an STD) should not engage in conduct that is likely to expose others to the disease.(Nev. Rev. Stat. § 441A.180.) Although Nevada’s laws do not provide a list of prohibited activities, exposure to STDs (or HIV) is most likely to occur through sexual contact, particularly unprotected sexual contact, and needle sharing. For example, people who knew that they are experiencing herpes outbreaks and engage in unprotected sex would be exposing others to a contagious disease.(Neb. Stat. Rev. Ann. §§ 28-109, 28-308, 28-310.)
Under New Jersey’s laws, the exposure of another person to any STD (or venereal disease) through sexual contact is criminalized. Examples of STDs include: human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) chancroid (a bacterial infection) gonorrhea syphilis, and herpes virus. (N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:34-5.)
in New York, it is a misdemeanor for a person who knows that he or she is infected with a sexually transmitted disease (STD) to have sexual intercourse with another person New York’s law does not provide a list of sexually transmitted diseases, but instead refers generally to “venereal diseases.” (N.Y. Pub. Health Law § 2307.)
Additionally, anyone who knows that he or she is infected with HIV or another STD such as gonorrhea, Chlamydia,herpes, syphilis, or hepatitis, and exposes another person could potentially be charged with assault.

People who transmit other sexually transmitted diseases, such as chlamydia, herpes, syphilis, or hepatitis may be charged under Oregon’s second, third, or fourth degree assault statutes. In Oregon, a person commits the crime of assault by causing physical injury or serious physical injury. (Or. Rev. Stat. §§ 163.160, 163.165, 163.175.)

If you have herpes, you need to be up front about it. Let the person you are interested in make the decision about whether you are right or wrong for them. It can be a deal-breaker, and you risk losing them and all the time and effort you have invested in the relationship. Your partner has the right to know that they are taking a risk for getting herpes.

You can also choose dating people with herpes at online herpes dating site. You will meet lots of people who have went through the same problem around you.


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