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The equine industry is growing in popularity, which means that more people than ever are buying and selling horses. Unfortunately, however, many of these equine sales lead to disputes—some of which result in litigation. So, whether you are a buyer or seller, it’s important that you takes steps to avoid such disputes. In this article, we examine ways to avoid equine sales disputes. 

Avoiding Equine Disputes as a Buyer

Don’t buy horses sight unseen: Due to technological advances, horse sellers now have multiple ways to reach purchasers. Online auctions, social media, and sales websites are just a few of the ways that equine sellers and buyers can now conduct business. However, this isn’t without its drawbacks. The main problem with online equine transactions is that many buyers never lay eyes on a horse until well after they’ve purchased it. And when problems crop up that weren’t detectable based solely on online videos and photos, this can lead to legal disputes. So, as a buyer, one way to avoid equine disputes is to never purchase a horse until you’ve seen it in person.  

Inspect veterinary records: As a horse buyer, you should inspect the animal’s veterinary records before finalizing the sale. A horse that appears perfectly healthy may have a medical history that reveals otherwise. You generally may request a horse’s veterinary history from the seller or receive it directly from the animal’s veterinarian. In addition, for extra protection, you may address the horse’s medical condition in the contract.  

Don’t waive veterinary evaluations: Another way to avoid equine disputes is to obtain a prepurchase examination from an independent veterinarian. In addition, it is advisable to request a drug screen of the animal. And if you are unable to attend the examination live, you should consider having someone record it for your later viewing. 

Review registration papers: When an equine seller promises to provide you with a horse’s registration papers, you should confirm this in writing and demand to see a copy of them to ensure that they exist. Otherwise, a seller’s failure to provide these papers can result in a legal dispute down the road.

Get it in writing: Finally, you should never purchase a horse without a contract. And although it may cost some money upfront to have a lawyer draft or review your equine sales contract, doing so can help avoid future disputes and save you money in the long run. 

Avoiding Equine Disputes as a Seller

As a seller, the main thing you must do to avoid equine sales disputes is ensure that every sale is backed by a well-written contract. And before signing, you must ensure that you’re comfortable with all its provisions, including those that specify how legal disputes will be handled in case of conflict. An experienced equine law attorney can help you draft equine sales contracts that ensure the protection of you and your business.  

Contact a Wellington Equine Law Attorney 

If you are involved in an equine sales dispute, you need an equine law attorney in your corner. At Gueronniere, P.A., we will diligently pursue the successful resolution of your equine dispute. Founding attorney Grace de la Gueronniere has a strong reputation for providing excellent legal services throughout Florida, and she possesses the knowledge and experience necessary to resolve your equine sales dispute. Please contact us today to schedule a free consultation.