Bli medlem

English

Kontakt oss

HIV and the Penal Code

Section 237 of the Penal Code was amended by the Norwegian Parliament in June 2017. The Act now clearly states that a person living with HIV and having taken adequate steps to prevent transmission, like using a condom or being on successful ART treatment, cannot be prosecuted.

scheduleOppdatert: 06.06.2018

createForfatter: The Secretariat

labelEmner:

Section 237 of the Norwegian Penal Code criminalizes transmitting a hazardous communicable disease.

The new provisions do not make reference to The Communicable Disease Control Act that lists a number
of communicable diseases that is hazardous to public health. Hence, people living with HIV who are on antiretroviral treatment (ART) or who use a condom can no longer be prosecuted.

In the amended provisions, transmission of HIV or exposure to HIV may still be criminalized. However, if appropriate action has been taken to prevent infection, the person is cleared of criminal liability. ART treatment and condom use are two appropriate actions.

If a person has disclosed his or her HIV positive status prior to an unsafe sexual relation, the person cannot be prosecuted, according to the Act. Disclosing a positive HIV status to a sexual partner equals consent.

Furthermore, the preparatory works lists further aspects that will exempt a person from prosecution. The Ministry of Justice underlines that any person who acts responsibly to avoid infecting another person shall not be prosecuted. Disclosing your HIV status to a (potential) sex partner also make you immune to
prosecution. However, Norwegian law does not require people living with HIV to generally disclose their status to potential sexual partners.

To be proven guilty of an offence, the prosecuting authority has, according to the preparatory works, to prove an act of gross negligence. This means so called normal sexual intercourse is not punishable. Section 237 only comes into effect if you fail to take your ART-treatment and have much unprotected sex or have shown a threatening or violent behaviour.

In recent years, the provisions of the Penal Code on transmission have been used in connection with other sex offenses such as rape and sex with minors. In one known case, a person charged with exposing someone to the risk of transmission was acquitted due to being on successful ART treatment, and hence not being infectious.

In summary:
• Cannot be prosecuted if on successful ART treatment
• Cannot be prosecuted if using condoms
• Oral sex is not seen as hazardous behaviour
• Consent to sex with a person living with HIV frees the person from criminal liability
• Exempted for punishment are also infections from sex workers and injecting drug users, as well as
transmission from mother to child.

HivNorway welcomes the amended penal code.

Les også

schedule18.10.2019

→ Kvalitetsregister for hivpasienter på plass

I 14 år har seksjonsoverlege ved Infeksjonsmedisinsk poliklinikk på Ullevål, Bente Magny Bergersen, jobbet for å få på plass et nasjonalt kvalitetsregister for hiv-pasienter uten hell. Så kom en ny forskrift for kvalitetsregister og da løsnet det. I ettermiddag skal dette feires med mottakelse med inviterte gjester.

schedule16.10.2019

→ På høring i stortingskomiteen

I morgen klokken halv ti møter HivNorge Stortingets helse- og omsorgskomité i forbindelse med årets statsbudsjett. Høringen kan følges live fra Stortingets websider.

Scroll Up