The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 12: Court Procedure


12 V.S.A. § 1705. HIV-related testing information

§ 1705. HIV-related testing information

(a) No court of this state shall issue an order requiring the disclosure of individually-identifiable HIV-related testing or counseling information unless the court finds that the person seeking the information has demonstrated a compelling need for it that cannot be accommodated by other means. In assessing compelling need the court shall weigh the need for disclosure against the privacy interest of the test subject and the public interest which may be disserved by disclosure which deters future testing or which may lead to discrimination.

(b) Pleadings pertaining to disclosure of HIV-related testing and counseling information shall substitute a pseudonym for the true name of the subject of the test. The subject's true name shall be communicated confidentially to the court and those parties who have a compelling need to know the subject's true name. All documents filed with the court which identify the subject's true name shall not be disclosed to any person other than those parties who have a compelling need to know the subject's true name and the subject of the test. All such documents shall be sealed upon the conclusion of proceedings under this section.

(c) Before granting any such order, the court shall provide the individual whose test information is in question with notice and a reasonable opportunity to participate in the proceedings if he or she is not already a party.

(d) Court proceedings as to disclosure of counseling and testing information shall be conducted in camera unless the subject of the test agrees to a hearing in open court or unless the court determines that a public hearing is necessary to the public interest and the proper administration of justice.

(e) Upon issuance of an order to disclose test results, the court shall impose appropriate safeguards against unauthorized disclosure, which shall specify the persons who may have access to the information, the purposes for which the information shall be used, and appropriate prohibitions on future disclosure. (Added 1987, No. 194 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)