This comprehensive livery contract provides everything you want in the agreement with your owners and full legal protection for you. It includes provision for details of services, prices and of course the horse or pony.
About this livery contract
This comprehensive livery contract provides everything you want in an agreement with the owners and full legal protection for you. It includes provision for details of services, prices and of course, details of the horse or pony. By using this contract, we are sure you will spend far less time wrestling with client issues, great and small.
This livery contract is suitable for any yard. It is drawn very flexibly so as to give you the opportunity to edit it easily to suit the exact way you do business. Although it is drawn to protect your interest as strongly as possible, the draftsman has also considered what your clients will think when you send it to them. Your owners will not worry that they have to see a solicitor before they sign. However, as you read it, you may decide to soften some of the strictest suggestions we have made.
The British Horse Society (BHS) publishes what they call "an example of a Livery Contract which could be used as a basis upon which to draw up an agreement". To be fair to the BHS, they do not suggest that it is a good version for you to use as is. We say unequivocally that it is unsuitable for you for two good reasons.
First, the legalistic wording (for example, using "in the event that" instead of the simpler "if") will worry your clients that there are hidden implications in the contract that require their solicitor to review it. They will be reluctant to sign it quickly.
Second, and more importantly, the BHS livery contract is sponsored by the British Equine Vets Association, the ILPH and the RSPCA. To be blunt, the entire document is slanted towards care of the horse and legal protection of the horse owner and not the yard owner.
These welfare organisations are trying to nudge yard owners into doing things properly. We have no problem with that agenda. The ILPH is based just up the road from Net Lawman and we admire their work greatly. But the aim of the ILPH is to protect horses whereas the aim of Net Lawman is to protect our clients and customers. We think that it is devious and disingenuous to give the equestrian world a draft livery agreement which is actually quite unsuitable for yard owners.
The BHS does provide very useful "guidelines for a livery contract" which is effectively a memory jogger for matters to include. We have included those points so far as it is in your interest to do so but we have not included matters which we believe might restrict you excessively.
This Net Lawman livery contract is written as a business tool that you can use for every client. It confirms your terms and their instructions. It compels a client to tell you basic facts about the horse and to disclose any vice. In a word, it enables you to plan and manage more efficiently.
Disclaimers also include cover for situation when you are asked to ride a client’s horse on your land or anywhere else.
You can also use the livery contract to explain how the yard works and set down your practical rules and expectations.
The law in this livery agreement
A license is not required to operate a livery yard, and therefore anyone with spare stabling could offer livery. The law in this contract is common law, so you can make the deal that fits both parties best. Either you can edit the agreement to be your terms and conditions (and use the same version for all customers) or you could edit this contract for each horse or pony you take. Of course we take it for granted that you are aware of equine welfare issues, but they do not impact directly on your contract with your owners.
When to use this livery contract
A good, readable livery contract provides a marker to your efficiency just as much as a tidy yard and contented horses. We advise that you should edit the document to exactly what you want, then print copies out ready to give to potential clients.
- Drawn for professional livery yards
- Allows for different packages of services: full and partial
- Can be presented to the horse owner as terms and conditions on a “take it or leave it” basis or can form the basis of individual arrangements
This agreement is suitable for full livery. For DIY livery see our DIY livery yard agreement.
Contract features and contents
- Responsibilities and obligations of parties
- Compliance with yard rules
- Use of additional facilities such as cross-country course
- Fees and expenses, including failure to pay fees
- Care of horse including veterinary call-out
- Schedule of service and prices
- Schedule of facilities provided
- Schedule of yard procedures
This document was written and is maintained by solicitors at Net Lawman to comply with current English law.
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