Li­a­bil­i­ties of Tak­ing a Friend Rid­ing

Horse & Rider - - We Hear You -

I was very sur­prised that you ad­vo­cated and pro­moted hav­ing a pri­vate per­son in­vite some­one other than a fam­ily mem­ber to ride their horse in your Septem­ber 2016 is­sue. (“Take the Pledge,” From the Edi­tor.) I un­der­stand that ev­ery state has its own rules about li­a­bil­ity, but I’d never al­low anyone, es­pe­cially a stranger, to ride my horse. My un­der­stand­ing is that even if the in­jured rider didn’t want to fi le suit against you that their in­sur­ance com­pany could. It’s too big a chance to take; I can’t af­ford in­sur­ance to cover just anyone rid­ing my horses.

LOUISE H. LESTER, Maine

Edi­tor’s Note: We asked the of­fi­cials of Time to Ride to ad­dress these con­cerns. Here’s their re­sponse.

“Pro­fes­sion­als tak­ing part in Time to Ride pro­grams must ad­here to li­a­bil­ity in­sur­ance re­quire­ments, rules, and safety stan­dards. Non-pro­fes­sional in­di­vid­u­als are rec­om­mended to look into or­ga­ni­za­tions such as state horse coun­cils, many of which of­fer per­sonal li­a­bil­ity pro­tec­tion as a mem­ber ben­e­fit at no ad­di­tional cost. It is the horse owner/rider’s re­spon­si­bil­ity to pro­vide a safe en­vi­ron­ment; ap­pro­pri­ate mount, tack, and equip­ment; and be fa­mil­iar with all rid­ers’ abil­ity level. If there is any ques­tion about the safety of a sit­u­a­tion, un­mounted ac­tiv­i­ties are a good al­ter­na­tive that are safe, fun, ed­u­ca­tional and be­gin­ner-friendly.”

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