Autumn Equine Law Guide: Navigating Seasonal Legal Challenges in Horse Ownership

OLS Solicitors Blog

Autumn Equine Law Guide: Navigating Seasonal Legal Challenges in Horse Ownership

By Lara Davies on November 10, 2023

An article about common legal issues in the horse world in Autumn in the UK

Navigating the Busy Season: Understanding Autumn’s Peak in Equine Law Issues 


As the leaves turn golden and the air grows crisp, the equine world gears up for one of its busiest times of the year. Autumn is not just a season of natural beauty and harvest; it’s also a critical period for equine law issues. Whether you’re a horse owner, breeder, trainer, or involved in equestrian sports, understanding why this season sees a surge in legal matters is essential for navigating the complexities of equine law. 

 Sale and Purchase of Horses


Autumn is a prime time for buying and selling horses. After the summer competitions and before the winter lull, many owners make decisions about selling or acquiring horses. This increase in transactions naturally leads to a rise in contractual matters, ownership disputes, and concerns over warranties and misrepresentations. It’s crucial for parties involved in these transactions to seek legal advice to ensure that contracts are fair, clear, and legally binding. 

 Breeding Contracts and Disputes


Breeding season typically begins in early spring, and by autumn, many issues related to breeding contracts come to the forefront. This can include disputes over stud fees, breeding rights, shares of ownership in future stock and the health of equines. These matters require careful navigation, often necessitating the involvement of equine lawyers to resolve conflicts and protect the interests of all parties involved. 

 Liability Issues in Equestrian Events


The autumn season continues to host numerous equestrian events, with many competitors attempting to get their final qualifications for Winter Championships held in the spring. These events can be hotbeds for liability issues, especially as the season turns and decisions must be made as to whether events are held in adverse weather. The change in the weather can often result in accidents and injuries to horses, riders, and spectators. Understanding the nuances of liability, insurance, and waivers is essential for event organizers, participants, and owners alike. 

 Livery and Welfare Concerns


As the weather changes, the care of horses becomes more complex. The shorter days and increase in poor weather cause difficulties for most horse owners but this time of year often sees an increase in disputes regarding stable management, horse welfare, and livery agreements. Questions about liability for injury or illness, the quality of care provided by livery yards, and the responsibilities of both parties under a livery agreement are more common at this time of year. 

 End-of-Year Tax Planning


For professionals in the equine industry, autumn is a critical time for tax planning. Navigating the complexities of equine businesses, understanding tax liabilities, and making informed decisions about assets and investments require careful legal and financial planning. 

 Preparation for the Winter Months


Lastly, autumn is a period of preparation for the harsher winter months. This includes making arrangements for winter livery, feed, and care, which often involve legal considerations, especially in contractual arrangements with service providers. 




In conclusion, autumn’s busy equine calendar, with its sales, events, and preparations for winter, brings a multitude of legal issues to the fore. For those involved in the equine world, being aware of these seasonal legal challenges and seeking expert advice is key to ensuring that this busy season is both successful and legally sound. Whether you’re a seasoned equestrian or new to the field, understanding the significance of equine law this autumn is essential for a smooth and enjoyable season with your equine partners.

Please visit our dedicated equine law page for more information and costs.

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    OLS Solicitors launch new equine law service

    OLS Solicitors Blog

    OLS Solicitors launch new equine law service

    By Lara Davies on June 12, 2023

    Lara Hooper equine law expert

    New equine law service launches led by Lara Davies, equestrian and lawyer

    OLS Solicitors is pleased to announce the launch of a new equine law service. The firm’s decision to expand into this area of practice is rooted in their understanding of the unique legal needs of the equine world, including equestrians, farmers, and landowners.


    Senior level expertise in equine matters


    This new service is led by Lara Davies, a Director and solicitor specialising in Matrimonial and Private Children matters, who brings her personal passion and knowledge of the equine industry into play to provide comprehensive legal services tailored to clients’ needs.

    Lara Davies seasoned dressage competitor and horse owner


    Davies, a seasoned dressage competitor, understands the intricacies of the equine world first-hand, having spent her life successfully competing in national and regional level dressage competitions. Her experience in the saddle gives her a unique insight into the challenges and issues equestrians face. Combining this with her legal expertise, she is perfectly placed to guide clients through the complexities of equine law.


    Wide range of equine law services covered


    The equine law services offered by OLS Solicitors span a wide range of areas. These include Pre and Post Nuptial Agreements, Matrimonial Finances, Equine Dispute Resolution, Equine Drafting, and Wills and Inheritance Disputes. Each of these services is tailored to provide specialist advice on how equestrian and agricultural assets are treated and protected, particularly in the context of divorce and inheritance disputes.


    Equine dispute resolution services


    For instance, OLS Solicitors’ Equine Dispute Resolution service assists clients with all aspects of equine disputes, from the mis-selling of equines to loan disputes and ownership disagreements. Their senior solicitors work to resolve disputes efficiently and effectively, aiming to minimise clients’ legal costs.



    Equine drafting services


    The Equine Drafting service, on the other hand, is designed to prevent disputes from arising in the first place. This service offers drafting services in areas like loan agreements, agreements for sale and purchase, ownership and shared ownership, livery agreements, and more.

    Our commitment to the equine world


    In launching this equine law service, OLS Solicitors demonstrate their commitment to serving the unique needs of the equine world. With a team of senior solicitors equipped with personal understanding of the equine and agricultural industry, they are ready to assist clients in protecting their assets and resolving their disputes efficiently.


    The equine industry is complex and multifaceted. Legal issues can be just as complicated, requiring a deep understanding of both the law and the industry. Lara Hooper’s unique blend of legal acumen and personal equine experience places OLS Solicitors in an excellent position to provide a first-class service to their clients. Whether you are a horse owner, farmer, or landowner, you can trust in OLS Solicitors’ equine law services to help you navigate the legal landscape with confidence.

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