Tattoos are growing in popularity. 1 in 5 adults in the United States has at least one tattoo. Many are drawn to the idea of having meaningful artwork or words tattooed on them. While the health hazards of getting inked have decreased over the years due to safety measures artists are required to follow, there are still inherent risks.
In one recent case, a woman went to a shop she saw featured on a tattoo television program to get her latest design. She was horrified when she noticed that the rose she had tattooed on her became infected, resulting in a four day hospital stay. Not new to the art of being inked, the woman believes that the artist used a dirty need to tattoo her, and is now suing the shop for damages.
In addition to the risk of infection that comes with being tattooed, those who undergo the process are at risk for allergies caused by the ink, and scarring. The tattooed area may also burn or swell during an MRI exam. Those who have certain medical conditions may already be at heightened risk, such as those with diabetes or poor circulation. Additionally, tattoo ink is not regulated by the FDA. In fact, the FDA confirmed last year that certain inks were contaminated with bacteria and warned people not to use the products.
While it is unlikely to prevail in a lawsuit if you are simply unhappy with the artist’s work, if your tattoo subsequently becomes infected, you may be able to state a claim for negligence. However, usually tattoo shops require you to sign a waiver which includes an arbitration agreement. Many businesses now opt for arbitration, as it is more private and less costly than litigation.
If you have suffered an infection or injury due to the negligence of your tattoo artist, it is best to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney who can advise you of your legal rights. Call the attorneys at Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP at (212) 571-7171.