Every state has some type of law to protect horse people from lawsuits by people injured by horses. The important thing that farriers need to know about these laws is that they cut both ways. That means that they protect the farrier from others, but they also protect horse owners from the farrier.

They protect farriers when the farrier is the person performing the equine activity and someone else is injured. For example, a farrier is working on a horse in an appropriate area outside a busy barn.

Someone, who is not paying attention because they are texting on their phone, walks too near the area where the farrier is working and is somehow injured by the horse. The farrier is probably not liable as long as she has complied with the equine liability act.

But, they protect owners from the farrier when the farrier is the one injured. In another example, our farrier is working on a horse she has never worked on before, and unknown to the farrier, it can be difficult to control. In the ordinary course of the farrier’s work, the farrier is injured when the horse suddenly and unexpectedly behaves in such a way as to cause injury.

Most would agree that the owner or manager of the animal should have told the farrier about the animal’s tendencies. Even so, the equine liability act will probably protect the owner or manager from a claim by the farrier for the injury caused by the animal.

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