Needle use may seem like an old problem, or one that could be considered an issue that we have effectively controlled and know how to avoid. In reality, it’s still a major problem, and it’s just one of the many complications a person can run into at a tattoo parlor. In fact, dozens of legal issues and negligence claims may be raised against these businesses, ranging from style and design mistakes to infections and diseases.
Tattoo Parlor Responsibilities and Legal Options
Negligence is one of the main legal issues tattoo parlors and artists face. This is an area of civil law that is commonly used to determine who is responsible in personal injury claims. To avoid committing a negligent act, individuals and businesses must provide a reasonable standard of care, ensuring they don’t cause intentional or unintentional harm. To determine negligence in court, a plaintiff must demonstrate:
- A breach of duty. In this case, the business must have failed to provide a minimum standard of care.
- There was an injury. The problem must be carefully documented, including side effects, medical treatments, and related expenses.
- The breach of duty directly caused the injury. The tattoo parlor’s negligence must have clearly damaged the victim.
Understanding Standards of Care
Standards of care keep businesses safe and accountable, and tattoo parlors and artists must meet these principles at all times to avoid negligence. Common standards of care include:
- Understanding a client’s medical history and any complications that may result. For example, a person’s allergies must be considered before starting a tattoo.
- Only serving individuals over 18 years old.
- Meeting all state and federal mandated health and safety standards.
- Following hygiene criteria, such as washing one’s hands and using sterile gloves.
- Providing accurate, complete advice for treating the tattooed area.
A business that fails to meet these standards can (and should) be held liable. Negligence may lead to infections and serious diseases, which can affect a person’s quality of life.
Liability and Health Consequences
Infections, rashes, and other injuries are common damages a person may experience following a tattoo. However, though negligence in this case mostly concerns whether or not the business maintained a safe and sterile environment, simply getting an infection may not be enough for a personal injury claim; customers must assume a few known risks when getting a tattoo.
Though clients do sign consent forms acknowledging these dangers, a parlor could still be found responsible. The outcome of these cases largely hinges on proving negligence and whether or not the damage caused extended beyond the assumed risk of getting a tattoo. For instance, a rash resulting from an unknown reaction to ink is an assumed risk. A rash caused by a dirty needle, however, is not a risk someone knowingly assumed. Indeed, proving the degree of a professional’s negligence against the level of assumed risk will affect the outcome of your case.
Proving Negligence Alongside a Texas Personal Injury Attorney
Demonstrating negligence in these cases can be difficult. Tattoo parlors will likely claim you assumed the risk associated with getting a tattoo. That’s why a successful claim hinges so much on demonstrating that the artists’ actions led to an injury that would not have occurred in normal circumstances. Evidence, such as proper health and safety documentation, will be pivotal to your case, as will working with the right attorney.
There are a range of defenses a business can try to claim, from calling your conduct into question during the appointment to pointing out that any waivers you signed protect the artist or business from any litigation. If you are suffering from an injury and run into these excuses, you may be faced with extensive medical bills on top of your pain and suffering. Reach out to the Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C., for a devoted look at your case.