Whether you are running a large-scale
horse boarding facility or just taking in a few
boarders to help defray your horse expenses,
there are a few business practices that will help
minimize both the hassle and the risk.
facilities should have a good
quality boarder liability release agreement and everyone
should sign it, including boarders and their
families, show and clinic attendees and
visitors to your property.
Not only do liability releases
discourage people from suing you, they also
help protect you in the event that you are
Contrary to popular opinion, a good
quality liability releases is usually
enforceable if properly signed, even in states
such as California. Equine
Legal Solutions’ horse
stable agreement package includes liability
addition to your property
insurance, you will need commercial
liability insurance and care,
custody and control insurance for your
The per-claim limit of your care,
custody and control insurance should be
sufficient to cover the most expensive horse
in your barn, and the aggregate limit should
be at least equivalent to the total value of
all the horses on your property.
Equine Legal Solutions recommends that your commercial
liability insurance have a per-claim limit of
no less than $1M, and an aggregate limit of no
less than $3M.
See our general
about shopping for horse insurance.
good quality boarding contract helps set
appropriate expectations with your boarders,
and it also serves to limit your liability and
provide you with recourse when a boarder
doesn’t pay or otherwise breaches your
Equine Legal Solutions offers a horse
stable agreement package that includes a
comprehensive horse boarding contract.
wouldn’t rent out an apartment to someone
without having them fill out an application
and checking their references and credit. Why
should you run your boarding business any
Every barn has problem boarders, but
Equine Legal Solutions’ clients have found that taking these
steps helps greatly reduce the number of
deadbeats and other types of boarders you
don’t want to have. Equine
Legal Solutions’ horse
stable agreement package includes a complete
boarding application and instructions for
checking potential boarders’ credit and
you have a boarder who is not paying, or a
boarder who just can’t seem to get along
How can you legally get them off of
Horse boarding relationships, unlike
landlord/tenant relationships, are governed
solely by the agreement between the parties
and not by law.
This means that in your boarding
contract, you can set your own policy for
recommends that you have two termination
clauses in your boarding agreement – one
that allows you and the boarder to terminate
for any reason with 30 days’ advance notice,
and one that allows you to terminate “for
cause” with seven days’ advance notice.
Equine Legal Solutions’ horse
stable agreement package includes a
comprehensive boarding agreement containing
screening will help you avoid non-paying
boarders, but once in a while, you will have a
boarder who does not pay you.
Most states have laws that give
boarding stables a lien on horses for past
However, those laws typically require
you to follow a specific process before you
can sell a horse to satisfy the debt, and
the process is usually time-consuming and
For example, state livestock lien laws
often require you to get a court order, which
means that you would have to sue the owner and
obtain a judgment against them before you
could sell the horse.
This problem is often compounded by the
fact that you cannot find the owner and/or the
horse does not have much market value.
Meanwhile, you are continuing to feed
and clean up after this horse.
What can you do to protect yourself
from this type of situation?
The answer is fairly simple – your
boarding contract can provide you with more
rights than you would otherwise have under
your state’s livestock lien laws.
For example, Equine
Legal Solutions’ horse boarding stable
agreement package form specifies that if
you terminate the boarding agreement and the
boarder’s horses and/or property are still
on your property 90 days after termination,
you will automatically own the horses and
property and can sell them or give them away
as you see fit.
Your Horse Boarding Business
you are operating a boarding stable, which is
a relatively high-risk business, you can’t
afford not to incorporate.
Creating a corporation or limited
liability company for your business is
typically less than $2,000, and it can help
protect your personal assets from the boarding
Equine Legal Solutions offers incorporation
and LLC formation for a fixed price – just contact
us for details.