Theoretically, yes, but it is extremely unlikely to acquire hepatitis this way. First, it is important to know that viral hepatitis refers to different viruses, varying in the way they are transmitted. The most common ones are hepatitis A, B, and C.

Hepatitis A virus is spread from one person to another when the feces of someone with hep A get into another person’s mouth. If money had hep A–contaminated feces on it, the feces got into your mouth and you weren’t vaccinated, you might be at risk. However, those are a lot of ifs.

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) are transmitted via blood, semen or other body fluids. In these cases, money would have to be contaminated with hep B– or hep C–positive blood or fluids and would have to get into your bloodstream. That is pretty much impossible.

May is Hepatitis Awareness Month. Learn more about viral hepatitis here.