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Insurer Must Pay $5.2M To Woman Who Caught STD In Car

Judge's gavel striking a block.

June 21, 2022

A Missouri appeals court has upheld an arbitration decision awarding a $5.2M insurance payout to a woman who said she’d contracted a sexually transmitted disease while having sex with her former partner in his 2014 Hyundai. The woman contended the man had the human papillomavirus (HPV) and knew it before the encounter. As summarized in the Kansas City Star, the man was found “liable for not disclosing his infection status and the woman was awarded $5.2 million for damages and injuries to be paid by GEICO.” The carrier then filed motions “seeking a new hearing of the evidence and for the award to be tossed out,” claiming its due process rights had been denied and the arbitrator’s decision was unenforceable.

An article in Insurance Journal from around the time the appeal was filed in 2021 provides a few additional details of an earlier stage of the case. Geico’s investigation is said to have found the man had told the women on three separate occasions that he had been diagnosed with HPV-positive throat cancer, and that the two had had sex in sex in locations other than the car. Geico also maintained the woman’s injuries were not covered because they were unrelated to type of car insurance, and that it was blindsided by the arbitration process, which it characterized as “collusive and non-adversarial.”

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