It is really important that adverts when selling a horse are as honest and accurate as possible. The seller (both dealers and individuals) can be legally accountable (there could also be criminal sanctions depending on the facts) if they sell a horse knowing that what is in the advert is not accurate or correct, and the buyer relies upon their statements about the horse (legally known as misrepresentation which can be fraudulent, negligent and innocent). The English Courts consider representation to be what a reasonable person would have understood was being implicitly represented by the seller's words and conduct.
Sellers can’t tell you half truths. What is not said is as important as what you are told e.g. when asked if the horse is good to hack out the seller says the horse is fine to hack out in company but doesn’t say that if hacked out alone it rears and is prone to napping.
The information the seller gives to the buyer must be accurate throughout. The seller has a duty to tell the buyer about any changes throughout the buying process, and failure to do so will also amount to a misrepresentation.
Buyers should ask as many questions about a potential new horse as possible and where possible get the answers in writing so that you can potentially rely on these if things go wrong. I recommend having a contract drawn up.
If you have bought a horse which you now think does not match the description you were given, or if you are buying / selling a horse and want a contract drawing up, please get in contact.
Before completing the purchase Mrs Briscoe paid £5,000 to Stef Eardley, a dressage rider and judge, to test-ride the horse and assess its suitability. But in January last year Mrs Briscoe claimed Rambo’s behaviour had deteriorated due to underlying problems she claimed had been concealed by Mr Whitworth. Mrs Briscoe, 52, said:"I wanted to buy a horse that was a well behaved, well mannered, not sharp horse. I explained to the vendor that I had actually not ridden or competed for five years and that I was not a brave rider. “That doesn't mean that I cannot ride. I'm just not a brave rider and the horse was a very sharp horse. I never got hurt but that was mainly because I got off when he became tricky."