Suing for a horse not being as advertised? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 10:55 AM Thread Starter
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Question Suing for a horse not being as advertised?

I am in GA and bought a horse over the internet in FL. Was familiar with the bloodlines and had spoken with a previous owner and others who knew of the horse and got all glowing reviews. The horse, a stallion was advertised on multiple internet sites as being 15.3hds tall and on the Farms website (*************** in Ocala) as being 15.3hds tall. I paid for the horse in advance. No, I did not have a vet check done as I was primarily interested in the horse as a breeding animal so soundness wasn't a huge issue. I knew he was a proven sire. What no one told me is, the horse is barely 15 hds and not quite that bare foot. I do have a signed Bill of Sale stating the horse is 15.3hds tall. I do not yet have the horse's registration papers which were promised to me. They are "in process".

We went down to pick up the horse this past Saturday. Got there and I noticed the horse was small and commented on that. Person I had been dealing with, barn manager, was not there and out of town. I was rattled but since I had already paid for the horse, loaded him up and took him home thinking, I would take it up with the barn manager. I stewed on it for 6 hours driving home and the more I thought about it the more it bothered me. Got home, get the horse out of the trailer and stick him and sure enough he's a midget. I immediately contacted the barn manager and said this is unacceptable and unprofessional and unethical and I would like to return the horse for a refund. She says sorry, but she didn't do the ads and that she hoped he was settling in well. I spoke with someone else, a minion - administrative assistant type, who told me I should have had a vet check the horse's height if I was so concerned but they would not take the horse back and issue a refund. Do I have any recourse? Am I just SOL? This place is holding itself out as a business with farms in FL, CO, CA and Canada. Thank you for any constructive advice. Yes, I do know buyer beware but I do thing it is terribly wrong for this outfit to lie by omission with intent (which I concede may be difficult to prove) in order to unload a short, less marketable horse. I paid twice what he is realistically worth.

Last edited by SouthernTrails; 09-17-2012 at 03:51 PM.
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post #2 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:07 AM
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I'm sorry but you bought an animal sight-unseen without a PPE. Height is rarely, if ever, as advertised.
Is everything else as advertised? Are you ONLY miffed about height? I'm not sure 4" is going to make him worth half of what you paid... That is completely subjective.

I would strongly suggest you ask a Mod to remove that barn name from your post; you're mad but I'm not sure it warrants bringing forth the barn's name as you CHOSE to forego industry standards such as seeing the horse in person or having a PPE, in which you could have asked the vet to measure. Bringing the barn's name up is in poor taste and they could look at it as libel.

Sorry, but IMO take this as an expensive lesson to not buy sight unseen, or make sure you dot every I and cross every T that is important to you before you pay for the animal.
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Last edited by JustDressageIt; 09-17-2012 at 11:10 AM.
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post #3 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:08 AM
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you got there, looked at the horse knew it wasnt as advertised and took it home anyway ? Whats wrong with you ?
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post #4 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:12 AM
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Welcome to the forum.

It could go either way, imo. You saw the horse, recognized he was small, and left the property with him. You could have asked to have him measured right then.

However, You did pay in advance, and the ad did clearly state he was 15.3 and he is not.. definitely in your favor.

Why in the world did you leave with him if height was an issue for you?

I'm sorry this happened. Good luck.

All you can do is contact an attorney about the law and see what he/she says.
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post #5 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:14 AM
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If you have a sales contract I'll just about bet that there's a "no warranties, as is, where is" clause in it and you have no recourse. The only thing you could have done was to refuse the horse at the farm and ask for your money back then, which they might or might not have done. I'm thinking you just learned a very expensive lesson.

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post #6 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:15 AM Thread Starter
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Because I had indeed paid for him. At least if I took him with me, I had something for the money paid and I was not dealing with the barn manager but a stand-in. If I left without the horse, or my money, which they were not going to give me then. I would have been leaving empty handed then trying to wrangle a refund. If I have no standing for my stupidity of not having his height checked by an outside source since the farm could not be trusted to accurately represent the animal, then I would have to go back and get the horse and I'm sure they would tack on all kinds of costs for board, etc., etc. At least I had control over the horse. And it's not libel if it's true.
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post #7 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:16 AM
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I agree with the above post. Some people are terrible when it comes to figuring out a horse's height. This was something you noticed off the start. I understand you drove a long way to pick him up but if it was something that you feel this strongly about ibwould have demanded to speak with the owner no matter where they were and have sorted this out before you loaded him up and took him home.
Yes they could have been nicer about it and allowed you to get a refund but standing in their shoes I would have a hard time allowing a horse that left my barn travelled across the country and now they want to return him? What happened to him? What issues will he have now? You took him knowing he wasn't as tall as stated.
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post #8 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
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There was no sales/purchase contract and I suspect you are right but wanted to ask.
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post #9 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:22 AM
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You didnt see the horse, you didnt have it vetted. Its therefore your fault and your loss.

I'd want to know what sort of back yard breeding establishment you are running that you wouldnt have a PPE and that a small difference in height is the biggest thing you can find to worry about.
Soundness of breeding horses is of utmost importance unless they are unsound through injury (which a PPE would pick up). If you do not care about sound horses then how on earth are you going to breed sound stock
How do you know that the horse hasnt got an infectious disease, how do you know he isnt a rig (rigs can still sire foals), how do you know that he hasnt got some disfigurement that clever camera angles has disguised or degenerative joint disorder.
If anything a PPE for breeding stock is just as essential as for ridden stock!

RIDE your horse FORWARDS and keep him STRAIGHT

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post #10 of 58 Old 09-17-2012, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Tallulah View Post
No, I did not have a vet check done as I was primarily interested in the horse as a breeding animal so soundness wasn't a huge issue.-----------

. I do not yet have the horse's registration papers which were promised to me. They are "in process".
Mmmmm Hello and welcome to the forum.....I think.

Nothing here sounds quite right, if you are buying a breeding animal, then health is a huge issue, and congenital unsoundness should be, why would you not have a PPE done?

If height is such an issue for you I really don't understand why you loaded the horse and took it, and why you left without the papers.

I don't get why not being up to height halves his value.

WHy did you pay in full before actually picking him up?

I'm sorry OP, I'm struggling with this one big time, if you are not a troll, then you are a genuine and somewhat naive person, so I'm not sure that breeding is your best way forward.

I have no idea where you stand in law, you accepted the horse even though you had a chance to inspect him before loading, so you may have been deemed as accepting him
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