Equine or Horse Law covers all activities dealing with horses, horse welfare, equestrian sports, recreational use of horses, riders and rider safety. Federal, state and local laws govern this area of practice.
Several states have enacted statutes to protect horsemen, camps, stables, and other horse providers. These statutes are designed to protect providers from frivolous lawsuits arising out of horse accidents that could not have been avoided. These statutes also protect riders from negligence on part of providers or stables.
The statutes usually provide that a person may not sue if the accident resulted from an inherent risk of equine activities. They also spell out what risks – such as providing defective tack or failing appropriately to match horse with rider – are not inherent and therefore fair game for a lawsuit.
In many states the equine provider must post notices or include notices in contracts, or both, to bring their operations under the statute’s protection. These notices must contain language required by that state’s statute.