But AQHA doesn't require the registration papers go with the horse.. they just have to be returned to the registry. Even if they are returned to the registry they will not release them to a new buyer. So if you are buying a horse without papers you are putting yourself at risk of never getting them. Called the AQHA to verify as well.
I was in error, it's the Pedigree Act, not the Livestock Act. I was under the belief that the registry accepts the papers on the death of an animal so that the name can eventually go back in to circulation. A few people I've known haven't been upfront regarding the paperwork getting to the buyer and have lost priveleges with AQHA. Which isn't much help if the seller isn't a breeder.