University of Vermont AAHS

Equine Activity Statute Posting

POSTING/NOTICE REQUIREMENTS

under

EQUINE ACTIVITIES STATUTES (through 11/25/95)

prepared by
Robert O. Dawson
Professor of Law
University of Texas School of Law
for the American Association for Horsemanship Safety, Inc.

INTRODUCTION

Equine Activity Statutes have been enacted in 35 states. They are intended to protect stables and camps from frivolous lawsuits brought as a result of injuries from riding or handling horses. Although there are some variations from state to state, these statutes basically provide that a camp guide, instructor, camp or stables is not liable for injuries that result from risks that are inherent in riding or handling horses. Therefore, they can be important if an accident occurs and a lawsuit is brought, particularly if the injuried person is a minor. They are also useful in discouraging the filing of a lawsuit in the first place. Of those states with equine activities statutes, in 25 the stables or camp must provide notice in its contracts with riders or post signs at particular locations, or both, to obtain the benefits of the statutes. The notices or posted signs must contain exactly the language and be in the size required by each particular statute. These requirements, too, vary somewhat from state to state. Because these statutes can be so important, AAHS has assembled the language that must be used in all 25 states that require notices or posting or both so that you can obtain the benefit of these statutes that were enacted for your protection. This file contains only those parts of equine activities statutes that pertain to notice/posting requirements. For the full text of those statutes, look for the file in this file area for your state.

Notices or posted signs are required in the following states:

Alabama
Arkansas
Colorado
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Illinois
Indiana
Kansas
Louisiana
Maine
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
New Mexico
Oregon
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Virginia
West Virginia

ALABAMA
Code of Ala. 6-5-337

(d) (1) Every equine professional and every equine- activity sponsor shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subdivision (d)(2). Signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, or areas where the equine professional or the equine-activity sponsor conducts equine activities. The warning notice specified in subdivision (d)(2) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional or by an equine- activity sponsor for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's or the equine-activity sponsor's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subdivision (d)(2).

(2) The signs and contracts described in subdivision (d)(1) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Alabama law, an equine activity sponsor or equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to the Equine Activities Liability Protection Act.

(3) Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning signs and notices provided in this section shall prevent an equine-activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this section.

ARKANSAS
Arkansas Code s 16-120-202

(4) (A) EVERY EQUINE ACTIVITY SPONSOR SHALL POST AND MAINTAIN SIGNS WHICH CONTAIN THE WARNING NOTICE SPECIFIED IN SUBDIVISION (B) OF THIS SECTION. SUCH SIGNS SHALL BE PLACED IN A CLEARLY VISIBLE LOCATION ON OR NEAR STABLES, CORRALS OR ARENAS WHERE THE EQUINE ACTIVITY SPONSOR CONDUCTS EQUINE ACTIVITIES. THE WARNING NOTICE SPECIFIED IN SUBDIVISION (B) OF THIS SECTION SHALL APPEAR ON THE SIGN IN BLACK LETTERS, WITH EACH LETTER TO BE A MINIMUM OF ONE (1) INCH IN HEIGHT.

(B) THE SIGNS DESCRIBED IN SUBDIVISION (A) OF THIS SECTION SHALL CONTAIN THE FOLLOWING WARNING NOTICE:

"WARNING

UNDER ARKANSAS LAW, AN EQUINE ACTIVITY SPONSOR IS NOT LIABLE FOR AN INJURY TO, OR THE DEATH OF, A PARTICIPANT IN EQUINE ACTIVITIES RESULTING FROM THE INHERENT RISK OF EQUINE ACTIVITIES."

COLORADO
Colorado Revised Statutes 13-21-119.

(5) (a) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in paragraph (b) of this subsection (5). Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities if such stables, corrals, or arenas are owned, managed, or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in paragraph (b) of this subsection (5) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in paragraph (b) of this subsection (5).

(b) The signs and contracts described in paragraph (a) of this subsection (5) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Colorado Law, an equine professional is not liable for an njury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to section 13-21-119, Colorado Revised Statutes.

DELAWARE
10 Delaware Code s 8140

(D)(1) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (2). Such signs shall be placed in clearly visible locations on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities if such stables, corrals, or arenas are owned, managed, or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in subsection (2) shall appear on the sign in red and white, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch (1") in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (2).

(2) The signs and contracts described in subsection (1) shall contain the following warning notice:
'WARNING

Under Delaware Law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to 10 Delaware Code Section 8140.'"

FLORIDA
Florida Statutes Section 773.04 Posting and notification.

(1) Every equine activity sponsor and equine professional shall: (a) Post and maintain one or more signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (2). These signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location near to where the equine activity begins. The warning notice specified in subsection (2) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of 1 inch in height, with sufficient color contrast to be clearly distinguishable. (b) Give the participant a written document which the participant shall sign with the warning notice specified in subsection (2) clearly printed on it. Said written document may be used in lieu of posting the warning on the site of the equine activity sponsor's or equine professional's facility, and shall be given to any participant in an equine event not on the location of the equine activity sponsor's or equine professional's facility.

(2) The signs and document described in subsection (1) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING

Under Florida law, an equine activity sponsor or equine professional is not liable for an injury to, or the s where the equine professional or the equine activity sponsor conducts equine activities.

GEORGIA
Official Code of Georgia 4-12-4. Warning required; effect of failure to comply with notice requirement

(a) Every equine professional and every equine activity sponsor shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (b) of this Code section. Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional or the equine activity sponsor conducts equine activities. The warning notice specified in subsection (b) of this Code section shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional or by an equine activity sponsor for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's or the equine activity sponsor's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (b) of this Code section.

(b) The signs and contracts described in subsection (a) of this Code section shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Georgia law, an equine activity sponsor or equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to Chapter 12 of Title 4 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated.

(c) Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning signs and notices provided in this Code section shall prevent an equine activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this chapter.

ILLINOIS
Section 25. Warning.

(a) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs that contain the warning notice specified in subsection (b) of this Section. Signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities if the stables, corrals, or arenas are owned, managed, or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in subsection (b) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (b).

(b) The signs and contracts described in subsection (a) shall contain the following warning notice:

"WARNING
Under the Equine Activity Liability Act, each participant who engages in an equine activity expressly assumes the risks of engaging in and legal responsibility for injury, loss, or damage to person or property resulting from the risk of equine activities."

INDIANA
s 34-4-44-10. Warning notice to be posted

(a) This chapter does not apply unless an equine activity sponsor or an equine professional posts and maintains in at least one (1) location on the grounds or in the building that is the site of an equine activity a sign on which is printed the warning notice set forth in section 12 [IC 34-4- 44-12] of this chapter.

(b) A sign referred to in subsection (a) must be placed in a clearly visible location in proximity to the equine activity.

(c) The warning notice on a sign referred to in subsection (a) must be printed in black letters, and each letter must be at least one (1) inch in height.

s 34-4-44-11. Warning notice to be included in written contracts

(a) If there is a written contract, this chapter does not apply unless the written contract entered into by an equine professional for:

(1) The providing of professional services;

(2) The providing of instruction; or

(3) The rental of:

(A) Equipment or tack; or

(B) An equine;

to a participant contains in clearly readable print the warning notice set forth in section 12 [IC 34-4-44-12] of this chapter.

(b) The warning notice required by subsection (a) must be included in a written contract described in subsection (a) whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business.

s 34-4-44-12. Warning notice

The warning notice that must be printed on a sign under section 10 [IC 34-4-44-10] of this chapter and included in a written contract under section 11 [IC 34-4-44-11] of this chapter is as follows:

WARNING

Under Indiana law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to, or the death of, a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities.

KANSAS

Sec. 4. (a) Every domestic animal professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (b). Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, boarding areas, or arenas where the professional conducts domestic animal activities if such stables, corrals, boarding areas or arenas are owned, managed or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in subsection (b) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by a domestic animal professional for the providing of professional services, instruction or the rental of equipment or tack or a domestic animal to a participant, whether or not the contract involves domestic animal activities on or off the location or site of the domestic animal professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice and language specified in subsections (b) and (c).

(b) The signs and contracts described in subsection (a) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Kansas law, there is no liability for an injury to or the death of a participant in domestic animal activities resulting from the inherent risks of domestic animal activities, pursuant to sections 1 through 4 [of House Bill No. 2222 passed by the 75th Legislature, 1993-94 Regular Session]. You are assuming the risk of participating in this domestic animal activity.

(c) The contracts described in subsection (a) shall contain the following language: "Inherent risks of domestic animal activities include, but shall not be limited to: (1) The propensity of a domestic animal to behave in ways i.e., running, bucking, biting, kicking, shying, stumbling, rearing, falling or stepping on, that may result in an injury, harm or death to persons on or around them; (2) the unpredictability of a domestic animal's reaction to such things as sounds, sudden movement and unfamiliar objects, persons or other animals; (3) certain hazards such as surface and subsurface conditions; (4) collisions with other domestic animals or objects; and (5) the potential of a participant to act in a negligent manner that may contribute to injury to the participant or others, such as failing to maintain control over the domestic animal or not acting within such participant's ability."

LOUISIANA
Louisiana Revised Statutes 2795.1

E. Every equine professional and every equine activity sponsor shall post and maintain a sign conspicuously located which contains the warning notice specified in Subsection F of this Section. The sign shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near any stable, corral, or arena where the equine professional or the equine activity sponsor conducts equine activities. The warning notice specified in Subsection F of this Section shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional or by an equine activity sponsor for the provision of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's or the equine activity sponsor's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in Subsection F of this Section.

F. The signs and contracts described in Subsection E of this Section shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Louisiana law, an equine activity sponsor or equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to R.S. 9:2795.1.

G. Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning notices provided in this Section shall prevent an equine activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privilege of immunity provided by this Section.

MAINE
7 Maine Revised Statutes 4101

1. STATEMENT OF INHERENT RISKS. A written contract entered into by an equine professional for the provision of professional services, instruction or the rental of equipment, tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, must include a statement of the inherent risks of equine activities including, but not limited to: "A. The propensity of an equine to behave in ways that may result in injury, harm or death to persons on or around the equine; B. The unpredictability of an equine's reaction to such things as sounds, sudden movement and unfamiliar objects, person or other animals; C. Certain hazards, such as surface or subsurface conditions; D. Collisions with other equines or objects; and E. The potential of a participant to act in a negligent manner that may contribute to injury to the participant or others, such as failing to maintain control over the equine or not acting within the participant's ability."

MASSACHUSETTS
Mass.Ann. Laws Ch. 128, 2D

(d) (1) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in paragraph (2) . Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location in the proximity of the equine activity. The warning notice specified in said paragraph (2) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in said paragraph (2) .

(2) The signs and contracts described in paragraph (1) shall contain the following notice:

WARNING
Under Massachusetts law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to, or the death of, a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to section 2D of chapter 128 of the General Laws.

MICHIGAN

Sec. 6. (1) An equine professional shall post and maintain signs that contain the warning notice set forth in subsection (3). The signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location in close proximity to the equine activity. The warning notice shall appear on the sign in conspicuous letters no less than 1 inch in height.

(2) A written contract entered into by an equine professional for providing professional services, instruction, or rental of equipment, tack, or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves an equine activity on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice set forth in subsection (3).

(3) A sign or contract described in this section shall contain substantially the following warning notice:

WARNING

Under the Michigan equine activity liability act, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in an equine activity resulting from an inherent risk of the equine activity.

MINNESOTA

Subd. 4. Posting notice. A livestock activity sponsor shall post plainly visible signs at one or more prominent locations in the premises where the livestock activity takes place that include a warning of the inherent risks of livestock activity and the limitation of liability under this section.

MISSISSIPPI

SECTION 4. (1) Every equine activity sponsor and every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (2) of this section. Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals or arenas where the equine activity sponsor or the equine professional conducts equine activities. The warning notice specified in subsection (2) of this section shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one (1) inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional or by an equine activity sponsor for the providing of professional services, instruction or the rental of equipment or tack, or an equine participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine activity sponsor's or the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (2) of this section.

(2) The signs and contracts described in subsection (1) of this section shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING:
Under Mississippi law, an equine activity or equine sponsor is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to the equine activity statute.

(3) Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning signs and notices provided in this section shall prevent an equine activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this act.

MISSOURI
Revised Statutes of Missouri Ch. 537.325

6. Every equine activity sponsor shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in this subsection. Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities if such stables, corrals or arenas are owned, managed or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in this subsection shall appear on the sign in black letters on a white background with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional and equine activity sponsor for the providing of professional services, instruction or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's or equine activity sponsor's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in this subsection. The signs and contracts described in this subsection shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Missouri law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities pursuant to the Revised Statutes of Missouri.

NEW MEXICO
New Mexico Statutes Annotated 42-13-5 Posting of notice

Operators, owners, trainers and promoters of equine activities or equine facilities, including but not limited to stables, clubhouses, ponyride strings, fairs and arenas, and persons engaged in instructing or renting equine animals shall post clearly visible signs at one or more prominent locations that shall include a warning regarding the inherent risks of the equine activity and the limitations on liability of the operator, owner, trainer or promoter. [Note. That warning should contain the following language: "Under New Mexico law, no person, corporation or partnership is liable for personal injuries to or for the death of a rider that may occur as a result of the behavior of equine animals while engaged in any equine activities. 'Behavior of equine animals' means the propensity of an equine animal to kick, bite, shy, buck, stumble, bolt, rear, trample, be unpredictable or collide with other animals, objects or persons."]

OREGON
Oregon Revised Statute 30.693

(2) The limitations on liability provided in ORS 30.691 shall apply to an adult participant in the circumstances listed in subsection (1)(b) of this section if the participant, prior to riding, training, driving, grooming or riding as a passenger upon an equine, knowingly executes a release stating that as a condition of participation, the participant waives the right to bring an action against the equine professional or equine activity sponsor for any injury or death arising out of riding, training, driving, grooming or riding as a passenger upon the equine. A release so executed shall be binding upon the adult participant, and no equine professional or equine activity sponsor shall be liable in the circumstances described in subsection (1)(b) of this section except as provided in ORS 30.691 (2).

30.695. Effect of written release on liability of veterinarian or farrier.

(1) No veterinarian or farrier shall be liable to any person who assists the veterinarian or farrier in rendering veterinarian or farrier services to an equine if the person, prior to assisting the veterinarian or farrier, executes a release stating that the person rendering assistance waives the right to bring an action against the veterinarian or farrier for any injury or death arising out of assisting in the provision of veterinarian or farrier services. A release so executed shall be enforceable regardless of lack of consideration. (2) A release executed pursuant to this section shall not limit the liability of a veterinarian or farrier for gross negligence or intentional misconduct.

RHODE ISLAND
Rhode Island General Laws 4-21-4. Posting and notification

(a) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (b). Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location in the proximity of the equine activity. The warning notice specified in subsection (b) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (b).

(b) The signs and contracts described in subsection (a) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Rhode Island Law, an equine professional, unless he or she can be shown to have failed to be in the exercise of due care, is not liable for an injury to, or the death of, a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to this chapter.

SOUTH CAROLINA
South Carolina Code Annotated 47-9-730. Warning signs; contract to contain warning notice; immunity revoked for failure to comply.

(A) An equine professional and an equine activity sponsor shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (B). These signs must be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional or the equine activity sponsor conducts equine activities. The warning notice specified in subsection (B) must appear on the sign in black letters with each letter a minimum of one inch in height. A written contract entered into by an equine professional or by an equine activity sponsor to provide professional services, instruction, or rental of equipment, tack, or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the business of the equine professional or the equine activity sponsor, must contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (B). (B) A sign and contract described in subsection (A) must contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under South Carolina law, an equine activity sponsor or equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in an equine activity resulting from an inherent risk of equine activity, pursuant to Article 7, Chapter 9 of Title 47, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1976.

(C) Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning signs and notices provided in this section prevents an equine activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this article.

SOUTH DAKOTA
South Dakota Codified Laws 42-11-5 Warning signs -- Placement -- Size

Each equine professional shall post and maintain the following sign:

WARNING
Under South Dakota law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to 42-11-2.

Such signs shall be placed in a clearly visible location on or near stables, corrals, race tracks or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities. The warning notice shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter being a minimum of one inch in height. Each written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice provided in this chapter.

TENNESSEE
Tennessee Code Annotated 44-20-105 Warning signs and notice

(a) Every equine professional shall post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in subsection (b). Such signs shall be placed in clearly visible locations on or near stables, corrals, or arenas where the equine professional conducts equine activities if such stables, corrals, or arenas are owned, managed, or controlled by the equine professional. The warning notice specified in subsection (b) shall appear on the sign in black letters, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch (1") in height. Every written contract entered into by an equine professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment or tack or an equine to a participant, whether or not the contract involves equine activities on or off the location or site of the equine professional's business, shall contain in clearly readable print the warning notice specified in subsection (b). (b) The signs and contracts described in subsection (a) shall contain the following warning notice:

WARNING
Under Tennessee Law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated, title 44, chapter 20.

VIRGINIA
Virginia Code Annotated 3.1-796.132.

B. Except as provided in @ 3.1-796.133, no participant or parent or guardian of a participant who has knowingly executed a waiver of his rights to sue or agrees to assume all risks specifically enumerated under this subsection may maintain an action against or recover from an equine activity sponsor or an equine professional for an injury to or the death of a participant engaged in an equine activity. The waiver shall give notice to the participant of the risks inherent in equine activities, including (i) the propensity of an equine to behave in dangerous ways which may result in injury to the participant; (ii) the inability to predict an equine's reaction to sound, movements, objects, persons, or animals; and (iii) hazards of surface or subsurface conditions. The waiver shall remain valid unless expressly revoked by the participant or parent or guardian of a minor. In the case of school and college sponsored classes and programs, waivers executed by a participant or parent or guardian of a participant shall apply to all equine activities in which the participant is involved in the next succeeding twelve month period unless earlier expressly revoked in writing.

WEST VIRGINIA
W. Va. Code 20-4-3. Duties of horsemen

Every horseman shall:
(1) Make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of a participant to safely engage in the equestrian activity, to determine the ability of the horse to behave safely with the participant, and to determine the ability of the participant to safely manage, care for and control the particular horse involved;

(2) Make known to any participant any dangerous traits or characteristics or any physical impairments or conditions related to a particular horse which is involved in the equestrian activity of which the horseman knows or through the exercise of due diligence could know;

(3) Make known to any participant any dangerous condition as to land or facilities under the lawful possession and control of the horseman of which the horseman knows or through the exercise of due diligence could know, by advising the participant in writing or by conspicuously posting warning signs upon the premises;

(4) In providing equipment or tack to a participant, make reasonable and prudent efforts to inspect such equipment or tack to assure that it is in proper working condition and safe for use in the equestrian activity;

(5) Prepare and present to each participant or prospective participant, for his or her inspection and signature, a statement which clearly and concisely explains the liability limitations, restrictions and responsibilities set forth in this article.

[Note. The Statement referred to should be as follows:
"It is recognized that equestrian activities are hazardous to participants, regardless of all feasible safety measures which can be taken.

"Each participant in an equestrian activity expressly assumes the risk of and legal responsibility for any injury, loss or damage to person or property which results from participation in an equestrian activity. Each participant shall have the sole individual responsibility for knowing the range of his or her own ability to manage, care for, and control a particular horse or perform a particular equestrian activity, and it shall be the duty of each participant to act within the limits of the participant's own ability, to maintain reasonabl control of the particular horse or horses at all times while participating in an equestrian activity, to heed all posted warnings, to perform equestrian activities only in an area or in facilities designated by the horseman and to refrain from acting in a manner which may cause or contribute to the injury ofanyone. If while actually riding in an equestrian event, any participant collides with any object or person, except an obviously intoxicated person of whom the horseman is aware, or if the participant falls from the horse or from a horse- drawn conveyance, the responsibility for such collision or fall shall be solely that of the participant or participants involved and not that of the horseman."]


Return to Top of Page
Return to Equine Activity Statute Menu