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Another STD Case?

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Junior Member
Another STD Case?


I live in Virginia. I am in the military and am tested regularly for STDs. I have been disease-free all my life. Last Fall I met a guy and fell in love. Before we had sex, I asked him about his STD history, if he had been tested, how long ago, etc. and shared my own information. He said he had been recently tested and was disease-free as well. In December of last year we decided to marry. The wedding was set for Feb 05. At that point we began having unprotected sex. A short time later, I began to suffer the symptoms of a very serious case of herpes though at the time I had no idea what it was. He was very sympathetic to my suffering as I went from doctor to doctor trying to get a diagnosis. Finally the STD showed up in testing. I was told it was not immediately obvious because I had never had chicken pox before. The doctor told me when it was likely I contracted it and it coincided with our first unprotected sex. I was devastated.
He insisted all along he didn't know that's what I had. When I told him he was the only person I could have caught it from, he said he guessed that was so, but he didn't know he had it and must have caught it from his former wife. He then went out and came back 2 hours later with a prescription medicine for herpes. I was suffering so much I didn't think to ask how he could get this controlled med so easily and quickly. He then said, "well if we both have it, I guess nobody else will want us so we better get married."
It was only after I discovered 2 months ago everything about him had been a lie--he told me and my family he was a college graduate, a former Army officer, a member of MENSA, a black belt in Karate, etc.; none of which was true--that I began to question his herpes story. I got with his former wife and she told me he had had herpes for 10 years, had been treated for it throughout their marriage, and he gave it to her!
My marriage to this man is all but over now, but his deceit has cost me alot. My biggest concern is that, with herpes, I'm "damaged goods" to any future partners, I will have to take meds for the rest of my life, and that if I want another child (which I do), I will have to have a C-section and go without meds for the entire pregnancy--not a pleasant prospect. Can I sue?


Junior Member
Good (though kind of obvious) advice

Actually, I have retained a firm that normally specializes in women's domestic issues. My concern is that they are also quite expensive and I don't know if they took the case because it really has merit or because they can charge me a lot even if they don't deliver. I'd hate to start over with another firm, but I don't want to throw good money after bad either. Is there no source for evaluating a law firm in Virginia?


In Virginia there was a law that states only people who are married to each other can engage in sexual intercourse. So since the sexual activity started before you were married it was illegal. In 1990 Virginia Supreme Court decision banned plaintiffs from recovering damages for personal injury sustained while engaging in an illegal activity.

Basically meaning since you recieved the std while commiting a crime you cannot sue.

But on January 16, 2005 the state’s Supreme Court ruled that sex between unmarried men and women is no longer illegal.

So if you recieved the disease before Jan 16 their defense will be it was a crime and you cannot sue but in the end it will be up to the judge to decide.




Junior Member

What Crazed said is what the attorney told me. There was a similar case filed a year or so ago in No Va that failed because of the sodomy law. That case is now on appeal since the law was overturned.
I am pretty sure I have the right to sue now, as well as sufficient evidence; I am mostly concerned about my choice of attorneys. They are willing to take the case on a contingency basis, but I would still have to pay all admin and filing fees as well as pay for expert witnesses. Is that standard?


Senior Member
Crazed98 said:
Yea...okay..... :rolleyes:

It's Better than your "obvious advice".

Moron, do you even read the stuff you post? The Virginia Supreme Court reversed the dismissal of the underlying lawsuit, holding that the "illegal act" defense did not apply.

"Surprisingly, the trial judge, Theodore J. Markow of Richmond City Circuit Court, agreed with Ziherl’s argument and dismissed the case. Markow refused to apply Lawrence v. Texas to this situation, reasoning that the state could have valid reasons for prohibiting heterosexual sex outside of marriage, such as protecting public health and encouraging marriage for the procreation of children.

Martin appealed, and the Virginia Supreme Court unanimously reversed the dismissal, in an opinion by Justice Elizabeth Lacy.

“We find no relevant distinction between the circumstances in Lawrence and the circumstances in the present case,” wrote Lacy, noting that the Supreme Court had ruled that “decisions by married or unmarried persons regarding their intimate physical relationship are elements of their personal relationships that are entitled to due process protection.”

Lacy found that the court’s 1990 precedent barring a person from seeking a recovery for injuries sustained during illegal activity could not apply to this case.

“The sexual activity between Martin and Ziherl was not illegal and ‘the fact that the governing majority in a State has traditionally viewed a particular practice as immoral is not a sufficient reason for upholding a law prohibiting the practice,’” wrote Lacy, quoting from Lawrence v. Texas.

The case was sent back to the Richmond County Circuit Court to give Martin a chance to prove that she had been negligently or intentionally infected by Ziherl."


Junior Member
Yes, that's a good synopsis, but....

Does anybody have any idea how I can check out my firm's track record?


stephenk said:
Moron, do you even read the stuff you post?

Yes I did read it several times. I was just giving her a heads up on what the defendant's attorney might try to do.

It's still better than your "obvious advice". :p


Senior Member
"I was just giving her a heads up on what the defendant's attorney might try to do."

Which is what? A defense that is not valid in Virginia?

I told her to go to a personal injury attorney. The attorney she consulted with is obviously not aware of the current laws in his own state.

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