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Court: Geico Must Pay $5.2 Million to Missouri Woman Who Got STD from Sex in Car

An arbitrator's decision in favor of the woman was affirmed by the Jackson County Court, and upheld by three judges with the Missouri Court of Appeals.

Published Jun 10, 2022

WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 10: The GEICO mascot performs during the game between the Washington Wizards and the Brooklyn Nets at Capital One Arena on February 10, 2022 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images) (G. Fiume/Getty Images)
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A Missouri woman who said she got a sexually transmitted disease (STD) from having sex with a man in a car may, in the future, be the recipient of a $5.2 million payout from Geico. The Associated Press reported that the man was insured by the company and that two courts have already ruled in the woman's favor.

The woman, who was identified in court documents only as "M.O.", said that she contracted human papillomavirus (HPV) and that "the man did not tell her he had the disease." According to Brittanica.com, HPV can "cause warts and other benign tumors as well as cancers of the genital tract, especially of the uterine cervix in women."

The woman originally sought $1 million from Geico for allegedly contracting the STD in the man's car. However, "an arbitrator eventually determined she should be awarded $5.2 million for damages and her injuries." This determination led her to the Jackson County Court, where the arbitrator's decision was affirmed.

The Associated Press published that Geico initially wasn't aware of the arbitration:

Geico claimed it did not know the man and woman had entered into arbitration and, when it found out, it sought to intervene in the court case. The company argued the arbitration award was reached through collusion and fraud, violated its rights to due process and was unenforceable.

The lower court rejected Geico’s requests and confirmed the award, prompting the insurance company’s appeal because it said it did not have a “meaningful opportunity” to defend its interests, according to court documents.

The appeals court found that Geico did not have the right to “re-litigate” the issues after the award had been affirmed.

On June 7, three judges with the Missouri Court of Appeals "upheld a Jackson County Court’s decision affirming an arbitrator’s finding that the woman was entitled to the award," according to court documents cited by The Associated Press. Geico has since filed a federal lawsuit that "will determine whether 'there is coverage in this matter.'"

We have reached out to Geico in hopes of learning more about the case. This story will be updated if more details come to light.

Sources:

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri. Missouri Courts, 7 June 2022, https://www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=187183.

Stafford, Margaret. “Geico Facing Payout to Woman Who Got HPV after Sex in Car.” AP News, 9 June 2022, https://apnews.com/article/health-kansas-lawsuits-business-d2968fb49ad807a720223ec09e7bc614.

The Editors of Encyclopedia Britannica. “Human Papillomavirus | Description & Diseases.” Britannica, https://www.britannica.com/science/human-papillomavirus.

Jordan Liles is a Snopes reporter with expertise in investigating misinformation, inauthentic social media activity, and scams.

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