The COVID-19 global pandemic has shone a light on several important ethical questions, ranging from fairness in resource allocation to the ethical justification of government mandates. In addition to these institutional issues, there are also several ethical questions that arise at the interpersonal level. This essay focuses on several of these issues. In particular, I argue that, despite the insistence in public health messaging that avoiding infecting others constitutes ‘saving lives’, virus transmission that results in death constitutes an act of killing. Whether this killing is wrongful depends on several factors. I consider one intuitively plausible view—namely, that in many cases, killing via unintentional transmission is not wrongful, because the parties in question have implicitly waived their rights against this harm, often via reciprocal risk imposition. I argue that this view is mistaken, but that its central insight can be better captured by identifying the appropriate standards of blame that we ought to apply during a pandemic. I conclude by showing how these conclusions can be fruitfully applied to certain institutional questions, such as helping to justify restricting government mandates.