Not your average insurance claim!


This may be the weirdest personal injury insurance claim I’ve yet come across.

The Missouri Court of Appeals ruled that insurance giant Geico had to pay $5.2 million in damages to a woman after she was infected with Human Papilloma Virus while engaging in intimate activities in someone else’s insured personal vehicle.

The claim was initiated in February of 2021 after the woman learned she had contracted HPV from an infected sexual partner who knew he was infected, but did not disclose his status. Because the incident which infected her and caused injury occurred in the partner’s car, and her partner was clearly liable, she argued she had endured personal injury which was not her fault, and that his liability insurance was therefore responsible for the damages.

There’s more at the link.

Note, too, that this is the verdict on appeal.  The initial arbitrator found in favor of the plaintiff, and Geico appealed – only to lose in court, too.

I don’t know what to think about this.  If one twists the average personal liability and accidental insurance policy into a pretzel, there may be legalese in the language that justifies this sort of damage award.  On the other hand, the woman was willingly and voluntarily engaged in the activity that led to her “injury”.  Doesn’t that make her a co-respondent in the matter, and mean that she has to carry at least part of the blame for the “damage” she suffered?

I know one thing for sure.  After this, every insurance company is going to have its lawyers going through its personal liability and accidental injury boilerplate with a fine-toothed comb, to weed out any language that might be used to justify an award like this.  Expect a rash of amendments to vehicle and liability insurance policies Real. Soon. Now.



  1. If it works for catching disease why not go for child support in the event of pregnancy ?—ken

  2. Probably going to insert a clause against any possible coverage for van aerial disease.

    Yeah. Throw me out if you really want. 🙂

  3. Actuaries will guarantee protection from liabilities with this new data set. In other words, insurance prices will increase.

  4. That is an odd verdict – most auto policies have a liability limitation – $10,000 as a very common liability limit – most will have $50K or more, but very few individual car owners are going to have a liability limit in the millions.

  5. Opening a can of worms, for sure.

    From his POV, however, talk about getting your money's worth for a monthly premium!

    I do have to wonder though, what a jury might have awarded in a civil trial, her against him.

  6. Next…What kind of car was it? As are some weapons, some cars should be banned, because of the attractive nature they present, fomenting having sex within, thus causing one to become diseased, or worse, pregnant. Think I crazy? Just read the case this woman presented.

  7. It won't stand, and they'll appeal this to the limit.
    It would end insurance, with a loophole big enough to drive a brothel through.
    The car had nothing to do with the injury claimed. If he'd injected her with an STD with the jack handle, she might have a case.
    This is just more proof, if you needed it, that the lowest IQs in the legal profession become judges.

  8. Absurd, absolutely. It's an STD. That she contracted it in the car…seems wholly irrelevant.

    As to the "willingly and voluntarily engaged in" thing, though: if I'm "willingly and voluntarily" using an (unbeknownst to me) improperly wired outlet in your home, and I get electrocuted, I'm not a "co-respondent" in my injury. And you/your insurance are going to be paying me or my next of kin quite a hefty sum. Same if I fall on a slippery floor, that wasn't marked, and injure myself. It's different if you were warned, thoroughly, in advance.

    Hence why "no trespassing" signs, clearly and easily visible, and a clearly delineated property line, are critical to establish that a person trespassed as soon as they crossed the labeled property line. Absent such signs (and even with them sometimes) it's not legally trespass until & unless they refuse to leave when instructed to by the owner/caretaker.

  9. Hold the phone, ice cream cone – contracted sumthin nasty, doing the nasty with vehicle owner in said vehicle. Was she forced at weapon – point to perform said act, or did she engage voluntarily in the behavior, or inquire as to her partner's health status before going to freak Town? Freely ingageing in risky activity presumes acceptance of some risk, it seems to me…or am I all wrong, and HOW?

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