Comprehensive Equine
Litigation Support

Equine Law Services

Qualified and Experienced Attorneys

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In the equine industry, litigation sometimes becomes unavoidable. Lawsuits can arise from disputes in the purchase and sales process, breach of contract, horse or rider injury, business deals, breeding rights, lien rights, equine veterinary malpractice, and more. Polly Hey is experienced in equine litigation, arbitration, and mediation, backed by her in-depth knowledge of the industry as well as equine law. Our equine litigation lawyers based in California, provide representation to both defendants and plaintiffs, helping you build a strong case and protecting your rights. 

The days of closing a deal informally with a handshake are over. At Hey & Hey, we always emphasize the need for proper paperwork and documentation that can help avoid or mitigate legal hassles. Many disputes arise when the terms of the horse transaction contract are not explicitly written down for later verification. However, if disputes arise, it is important to engage an attorney who is experienced in all aspects of the equine industry.


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The lawyers of Hey & Hey Attorneys at Law are located in California's horse country to effectively handle equine litigation cases. Randy, our founder, was a trial attorney who practiced law for over 45 years, working much of that time as a prosecutor with the Santa Clara county district attorney’s office. Randy’s in-depth experience included both criminal and civil cases, and he tried more than 300 jury trials. Polly is an equine attorney who has been involved with horses for 38 years. She has also competed on the hunter-jumper show circuit for 35 years.

If a horse or a rider is injured due to the negligence of either the owner, rider, or the trainer, it can lead to a lawsuit.

Representing Plaintiffs and Defendants

Not all equine law disputes warrant a suit if the parties choose to resolve their issues through arbitration or mediation. However, if alternative options fail, our attorneys can handle issues related to:

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Purchase, Sale, and Lease Agreement Issues

Equine purchase and sale disputes can arise if either the horse seller or buyer has engaged in dishonest practices. It is important to have a properly worded purchase and sale agreement to avoid such pitfalls. If disputes arise, your attorney at Hey & Hey can build a strong case and represent your best interests. We also handle disputes arising from horse leases.

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Lack of Disclosure

A client may purchase a horse that seemed healthy upon inspection, or was well-behaved during the trial period. However, after the purchase is completed, the horse falls ill or becomes lame, or exhibits aggressive behavior. If the seller fails to disclose full information about the horse's health or behavior, the buyer may have grounds to sue him or her for committing fraud.

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Injuries to Horse or Rider

If a horse or a rider is injured due to the negligence of the owner, rider, or the trainer, it can lead to a lawsuit. For example, if a potential buyer was riding a horse during a sale trial period, and the horse was injured due to the buyer's negligence, the seller may sue the buyer. Or, if a student or customer is injured due to faulty equipment or negligence while riding, the business owner, trainer, or the horse owner may be sued for personal injury. In the case of personal injury lawsuits, the plaintiffs can claim damages for the injury suffered, medical bills, lost income, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.

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Horse Abandonment

If you own a horse-boarding facility, and a client refuses to pay or abandons their horse, you will be left footing the bills. If this happens, there are several options to redress the situation under California law. We can help you recover the money you are owed, and deal with the issue of horse abandonment effectively.

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Polly represents clients in all matters relating to horses and have several contacts in the equine industry. Contact us if you are in need of assistance filing an equine lawsuit or defending yourself against legal action.

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