Legal – Deal Or No Deal

During the winter, many people flock to Florida for the equestrian events, and equally as many come armed with the intent of striking a horse deal, either as buyer or seller. With so much horse trading going on year round and country-wide, it is important that both purchasers and sellers be aware of the legal guidelines involved. Florida Statute 535.16, entitled “Sale and Purchase of Horses: Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices,” gives the state's Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services the right to adopt rules related to the sales process. Among other things, the Department requires that bills of sale be in writing, and that the bills of sale disclose the legal owner and buyer of the horse, relevant medical conditions, and any defects or surgeries that could affect the performance of the horse. If the required information is not contained in the written bill of sale and the purchaser…

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