Visitor Question

Testing for Disease After Getting Bitten in a Bar Fight?

Submitted By: Adam (Sparks, NV)

I was working as bouncer and was bitten in bar fight. I had to undergo medical testing at the time of the incident. Now it’s 3 months later and I still have a test pending in December to see if I have been exposed to HIV / AIDS or Hepatitis.

The attacker has refused to be tested. The District Attorney has said the only way to get him to comply with a test is to file a civil lawsuit and subpoena the attacker’s fluids. Results can take less than 72 hours to produce.

I am suffering severe mental anguish because of this. I was bitten in January and I should not have to wait 12 months to find out if I’ve been exposed to a potentially deadly disease, especially when as stated above results can be obtained within 72 hours.

I cannot find a civil attorney who deals with this. What can be done? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Adam,

Being able to have the possible host of the HIV virus tested would undoubtedly be very helpful.

Although I can’t give medical advice I have read testing should begin about a week to ten days after possible exposure and should be repeated every 3 or 4 months thereafter up to a year or so. If you haven’t produced the antibodies necessary to positively determine the existence of the HIV virus after a year, the likelihood of your having contracted the virus will be very small.

My research also seems to indicate a determination of the existence of Hepatitis can be made rather quickly. Depending upon the testing facility, results can be determined within a matter of days.

You can certainly sue the attacker for mental anguish but you won’t have much of a case. First of all you have no proof he infected you. Without some sort of proof you would be basically suing because you were bitten. Unless you required stitches or some other form of medical treatment for the bite you won’t really have any legitimate evidence upon which to build your case.

Another consideration will be the type of assets the fellow who bit you has. If his financial worth is limited, filing a lawsuit would be pointless.

You have plenty of time to sue him. In the unfortunate event you are determined to have contracted the HIV virus there is a two (2) year Statute of Limitations time period in the State of Nevada in which you can sue him.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: May 30, 2012

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