SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah


Ever since Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) was first recognized as a widespread public health problem, policymakers and legal scholars have considered how criminal law should be used to influence the sexual behavior of people with HIV. Surely, HIV is a problem that affects the general health, safety, and welfare of citizens. Thus, as most cases of HIV are transmitted through sexual conduct, states can regulate this conduct pursuant to their police powers. Generally, states that criminalize the transmission of HIV through sexual conduct provide an exception for HIV-positive individuals who disclose their status and obtain consent5 from their partners. However, these statutes tend to be drafted broadly and contain ambiguous disclosure and consent language.