Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.
How long ago did you sell the horse and how long after the sale has the buyer contacted you to return the horse?
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Many thanks for your patience. For legal purposes a horse is classified as an item. When a person buys an item from a private seller, their rights will be somewhat limited and will not be as extensive as if they had bought it from a dealer (i.e. A business seller)
In general, there is no legal requirement for the item to be of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose. Therefore, the buyer will only have rights in the following situations:• If the item did not match the description given, whether in the advert or any subsequent discussions. This would amount to breach of contract or misrepresentation • If the seller broke a specific contractual term – e.g. if they fail to do something they specifically agreed to, for example, provide treatment or documents before the purchase• If the seller was actually a dealer posing as a private seller - this is an unfair commercial practice and can even be a criminal offence
So if you had described the horse correctly and highlighted any potential issues with it and did not make any representations that turned out to be untrue, there is very little the buyer can do. Horses are living creatures, things can happen to the, that makes them turn lame and that does not mean that it is the seller’s fault. Therefore, unless the buyer can satisfy the requirements above and show that you had in some way misdescribed the horse’s condition, they cannot do much to return it.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of what could happen if they decide to take this further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Hi there, the main issue for you here would be if you had described the horse as sound, when it was not. That would be an incorrect description, even if you believed it to be true. So it comes down to whether at the time of sale the horse was lame as they are claiming, or if that is something which only became apparent after the sale. Also in these situations the legal principle of ‘buyer beware’ is important – this means that the purchaser of goods must take care to ensure that they are free from defects of quality, fitness, or title. In other words, all the risk is borne by the purchaser and not by the seller. If the goods turn out to be defective, the purchaser has no remedy against the seller. However, the rule does not apply if the purchaser is unable to examine the goods, for instance if the defects are not evident from a reasonable examination. In this case the seller did not see the horse before purchase but was given the opportunity to do so and they should have availed of that. So you can still refuse to accept the return of the horse and see where they take this. If they go as far as court you can reconsider your decision and even if you do not change your mind and defend the claim and lose – you will not be too much out of pocket as you will not be liable for their legal costs.