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Friday, December 05, 2008 Wonderinghow, Community Member, asks

Q: Could i build a lawsuit off of contracting herpes from an ex-boyfriend?

I got herpes from an ex, who a year or two later got a girl pregnant and after they broke up she contacted me to talk about some abuse related things he had done to her and wanted to know if i had been through similar things. So i told her a few stories...and i also told her that he had given me herpes. Upon hearing this she said that she had seen cold sores around his mouth and he told her on several occasions that he had no idea what they were from and that he'd never had them before. Wasn't it his responsibility as a human being to be honest with a girl that he was having unproteced sex with to be honest?

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Answers (6)
healthgal, Health Pro
12/ 5/08 11:07pm

Yes, it was his "moral obligation" to tell you if he knew he had herpes, but no, you cannot use his lack of conscientiousness to sue him.. there are some laws on the books in a number of states regarding intentional AIDS transmission but not herpes, which is not considered a "life threatening condition."


I hope at minimum you will always use a condom when engaging in sexual intercourse and know the history of future contacts - which may unfortunately mean asking them to be tested before you have oral or traditional sex.

Knowyourrights, Community Member
3/30/09 9:11am

I don't know who that so called 'expert' is, but her answer is incorrect. You can sue someone for knowingly giving you herpes. It is a serious, incurable disease. They will not go to prison, as they could for knowingly infecting a partner with HIV for example, but you are entitled to a monetary reward. Know your rights and act to stop these people.

raw267, Community Member
2/26/10 4:07am

i wanted to know if some one knew they had it could i sue?

gest, Community Member
4/28/11 12:15pm

hi,i got one nighte reliasonship and infectid with herpes,i think the person new about his situation and liyed to me.<he swore that he 100% clean> yesterday i did my 3rd blood test,during 2.5 munths,2 time test was negative,but i been told that i have herpes.i want sue him to for liying,i have aproove to

lawyer10, Community Member
6/22/10 11:26pm

I have been seperated from my husband for a year. I thought we were going to work things out and I started sleeping with him again. He was seeing a girl which he said to me many times they were just friends. Turns out she has herpes and he never told me. She was also aware that he was still married and slept with him anyway. Can I sue both of them?

raven7235, Community Member
6/30/10 8:26pm

I know that there will be alot proving to do, past records and treatments showing and or admitting to knowing prior that one knew.  I went thru this for two long years of he said,she said, but come to find out the accusor was the one who gave it to me.  All in it for the money  ( sad!! isn't it.) 

John Mathews, Community Member
9/12/10 2:30pm

One thing that wasn't looked at is he may have cheated on her and he had his primary outbreak but anyways, with a girl seeing he has cold sores then why is she still having sex with him.  If she knows what it is and still has unprotected sex it is on her.  You also have to know that depending on what you did with him depends on what kind of herpes you have just meaining if he went down then you would have herpes simplex type 1 in genital region or type 1 cold sores if you kiss.  If he has cold sores it doesn't mean he has type 2.

Knowyourrights, Community Member
3/30/09 9:17am

See for information on a case in Missouri - or for the story of the settlement reached in the Michael Vick herpes case.

I am not a lawyer or associated in any way with a law firm - from what I've read, get a personal injury attorney experienced in this type of case. Most cases are settled before trial. If someone knowingly infects another human being with herpes, they should be stopped. They have no conscience and will do it, or worse, again.

notobacco, Community Member
4/ 5/09 3:44am

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Last year in Texas alone, at least a dozen multi-million dollar lawsuits related to Genital Herpes were settled.  However, in each of these cases, the victims had to substantiate sexual abstinence since the infection, and further to swear an oath against future sexual intimacy. There are even suits involving animals. Since you definitely have herpes in your genitals and will have it the rest of your life for ever and ever and will always be considered an unclean social outcast, you are entitled substantial monetary reward and even federal aid.

Its_Me, Community Member
4/23/09 2:03am

Yes, you can sue, but it is extremely unlikely that you will win, because you have to prove that you got it from him, not anyone else, and also he can say you gave it to him. Plus, you said he get's cold sore... 90% of the population get's cold sores, and most of them do not know that it can be transmitted to the genitals. Keep in mind this may hit home for many jury members and they may realize that they could've passed their cold sores (which no one seems to feel the need to dislose, since they're "just cold sores"), and they don't wanna get sued and have to pay money over those little cold sores they've been getting since they were 10 that everyone thinks is no big deal (because our stupid society only thinks its dirty when it's below your waist... ass backwards if you ask me), so they may spread some "good karma" by denying your suit.

STD Carriers, Community Member
8/28/10 8:37am

That's a question I asked myself and my attorney a couple years ago when a girl I was seeing briefly finally told me about her condition after the fact and ended up infecting me. The answer was that I did in fact have a negligence case against her, but since she was in college with no money it would not be financially feasible to pursue the lawsuit.

Needless to say I was pissed and having just taken a web development course in my final term before graduating from the University of Oregon I realized that I could deploy a tool capable of preventing others from ending up like me. The tool would use a simple database combined with some web forms to empower the public to harness the power of the internet to warn others about potential threats to their health. The result is the website STD Carrier Disease Control and Prevention Services home of the only online STD Carrier Registry compiled primarily from anonymous reports made by members of the public.

It got a lot of attention at first. Ending up on CNN just a couple weeks after launch and featured on multiple local news stations in the summer of last year. Unfortunately not much has happened with it since then and I have had to move on to other ventures, but the site remains there on a safe overseas server operating 24 hours a day for you to warn people about that guy who gave you Herpes.

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By Wonderinghow, Community Member— Last Modified: 01/26/13, First Published: 12/05/08