Am I liable for the personal injury? 21 Answers as of June 02, 2013

I'm taking payments on a horse sale. The buyer gets hurt on the horse. Who is liable? She has made one payment of $500. She pays for board and feed. She wants her $500 back plus money for medical copays.

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Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
She bought the horse. Seems to me that it is her little red horse (and wagon).
Answer Applies to: North Carolina
Replied: 11/3/2011
Chalat Hatten Koupal & Banker PC
Chalat Hatten Koupal & Banker PC | Linda Chalat
Given the facts as you state them, you do not have any liability for the injury.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 11/3/2011
Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
If the bill of sale regarding the horse predates the accident and she was just paying you over time, then you don't have any concerns unless you were aware of some dangerous propensities of the horse and failed to advise her before the sale.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 11/2/2011
R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C. | Robert Kelly
When a person is negligent, the person may have liability for a personal injury caused by the negligence. "Negligence" is usually defined as breach of a duty of ordinary care. Everybody has a duty of ordinary care to act or refrain from acting in accordance with the standards of a reasonably prudent person. It appears unlikely from your statement that anybody would think that you were negligent. If there were documents regarding the sale, there might be further details to consider, but it appears likely that the purchaser owned the horse and merely owed you money. In addition, it is a common defense when an injured person has assumed a risk. Your position would be that the purchaser assumed the risk of riding her horse and it was not your fault.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 11/2/2011
Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry
Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry | Ronald Arthur Lowry
Unless the horse has particularly dangerous propensities that you hid from the buyer you have no liability. Plus, the buyer physically had possession of the horse and an opportunity to observe and learn about the animal so probably would have equal knowledge as you about the horse. If the buyer no longer wants the horse because of what happened and you want to force her to pay the full amount you legally can do so. Otherwise, if you want the horse back you can make a deal for whatever you are willing to do that she will agree to. Either way you have no legal obligation for her medical copays. An interesting legal question is present. If the buyer stops paying can you repossess the horse? That would depend on what the paperwork, if any, says about remedies for default. As a practical matter you may want to make a deal with her as she could stop paying you and your only remedy might be to sue her for the unpaid amount. She could sell the horse to someone else and keep the money, stiffing you.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 11/2/2011
    Law Office of Russell D. Gray, PC
    Law Office of Russell D. Gray, PC | Russell D. Gray
    The answer to this question would depend on what the purchase agreement says, and also whether you were negligent. If you weren't negligent, you probably aren't liable.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 11/2/2011
    Buff & Chronister, LLC.
    Buff & Chronister, LLC. | Curtis L. Chronister Jr.
    You have two issues, contract law and tort law (personal injury). Was the horse sold via a verbal contract or written? Unless there is a stipulation on how the contract can be voided or terminated, then the sale of the horse is likely to be in full force. If the buyer of the horse was hurt while riding the horse, then they assumed the risk. However, if you sold a horse that had a propensity to throw its riders, you knew about it, but did not inform the buyer, then you may have an issue with both the sale of the horse and the personal injury claim.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/2/2011
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law | Gary Moore
    Getting hurt riding a horse can occur despite everyone's careful handling of the horse. I would expect that you did not warrant that the buyer would not have an accident while riding the horse, which you sold to the buyer. On the other hand should you have failed to reveal something wrong with the horse which contributed to the accident you MIGHT be liable for the injuries and/or might have to refund the purchase price for the horse.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 11/2/2011
    Richard E. Lewis, P.S.
    Richard E. Lewis, P.S. | Richard Eugene Lewis
    Probably not, unless the horse had a poor disposition which you knew of but failed to disclose.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 11/2/2011
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    If you sold the horse as "gentle" when you knew otherwise, then the buyer has a case for medical damages and refund of the downpayment. Otherwise, caveat emptor, she is responsible for finishing payments for the purchase and her own medical expenses. Horses are not very smart and seem to injure themselves and people quite often. They are dangerous pets.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    McKell Christiansen
    McKell Christiansen | Michael McKell
    In Utah we have a specific equine statute that limits the liability of horse owners when someone gets hurt. The real questions to ask relate to the history of the horse. Has the horse ever been a problem horse? Has the horse ever bucked anybody else off? If the horse is a problem horse, you may have some trouble with your case because the terms of your transfer are not clear.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator | Bernard Huff
    The stated facts are insufficient to assess liability or blame for the accident and the buyer's injuiry.Was there a written agreement for the sale of the horse? If so, the terms of that document apply and should be read thoroughly.Was the buyer negligent in causing her own injury or was it just a "freak accident"?. In any case, you should at least consult with an accident attorney for specific legal advice and direction.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    ROWE LAW FIRM | Jeffrey S. Wittenbrink
    This question is dependent upon how the person was injured on the horse, and in whose "care custody and control" the horse was in. If the transaction was a true sale, even if you are taking credit the sale is a credit sale and the "owner" is the one who is responsible for the actions of the horse. In Louisiana there is no "strict liability" for personal injury cases involving horses.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Alfred Law Firm
    Alfred Law Firm | Janice Alfred
    If you had a contract for the sale of the horse and she has already begun to make the payments..she is technically the owner and you a lien-holder until the amount is paid in full. I would think of it like a car sale, with which I am sure you are familiar. The dealer who sells and finances the car for you is not liable if the owner gets into an accident and neither should you. If she tries to get out of the contract, you may be able to sue her for breach of contract, unless she can show that you misrepresented something about the horse and she relied on the misrepresentation to enter into the contract.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Law Offices of Andrew D. Myers
    Law Offices of Andrew D. Myers | Andrew D. Myers
    If the new owner fell due to their own inexperience or inability to handle the horse they are liable for their own injuries. Only if the horse caused the accident due to some defect which you hid would you be liable. Unless there are more facts, I would not be concerned about your liability.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    You are not liable and it has nothing to do with the sale. Any time you are near a horse there is a possibility that you could get stepped on, kicked or bitten; any time you get on, there is a possibility that you could fall or get thrown. This is called "assumption of risk". Unless you did something to cause the accident, it's just tough beans for her.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Law Offices of Kenneth Wincorn P.C.
    Law Offices of Kenneth Wincorn P.C. | Kenneth Wincorn
    This depends on what you put in the sale documents protecting yourself and why the addident happened. Without more information, the liabilities cannot be determned.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Cannot thik of a theory unless the horse is known to you to be of such a natire it would rear or do other things that could cause injurty to a person or lady did not, again known to you, have sufficient experience to be on or around the horse. For future such problems, try incorporting a release of liability in your riding and sales contracts.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/1/2011
    Attorney Paul Lancia
    Attorney Paul Lancia | Paul Lancia
    No you, are not liable. Don't represent yourself in court.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 6/2/2013
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