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Insurance, liability, indemnity when boarding

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  • Insurance, liability, indemnity when boarding

    I am considering purchasing a horse again. As a favor, a friend has agreed to let me board my horse at her farm. She has horses of her own, but does not board any other horses -- mine would be the one and only boarder.

    The boarding contract that I have been asked to sign contains stipulations regarding the insurance I must pay for: 1.) a boarding amendment to their insurance; cost is roughly $550; 2.) personal horse owners liability; she estimates this would cost around $200; 3.) mortality or surgical insurance; optional.

    In addition there are statements in the contract regarding possible injuries and legal fees. 1.) "Injuries and accidents can and do occur no matter how many safety precautions are taken. Boarders acknowledge and accept this risk factor." 2.) "Indemnity: Horse owner agrees to hold [friends, their farm, any farm owners], assigns, employees, and/or contractors harmless from any claim caused by said horse, and agrees to pay legal fees incurred by [friend] in defense of any claim resulting from damage by said horse."

    Since I have never boarded a horse before (I was fortunate enough in the past to be able to keep my horse at home; this is no longer an option) some of this is new to me. I understand about the risks of injury, the damage or loss of items I choose to store at their farm, etc. -- I am not surprised by them and understand the possibilities. I understand the advisability of purchasing personal horse owners liability and mortality or surgical insurance. But I am not familiar with the stipulations regarding payment of the boarding amendment insurance and the payment of any legal fees. Is this normal? While the boarding amendment insurance at least has a finite amount attached to it, the payment of legal fees seems to be a pretty open ended stipulation that could cost me dearly. Has anyone had any experience with this in a boarding agreement? Are these stipulations normal? Am I being overly concerned?

    I am very appreciative of my friend offering me the opportunity to board my horse on her property -- I am confident my horse would be safe and well cared for. And that means a lot to me. But I am unfamiliar with boarding and wondered if anyone could share the requirements of their boarding situation in the area of insurance, liability, and indemnity.

  • #2
    That's why you buy a liability policy for your horse. To cover any legal fees and damage he may do.

    The care, custody and control (boarder insurance) is necessary to protect the barn owner. Are you paying board too? If so, the insurance is almost always included in the monthly board payment.
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    • #3
      I board horses on my private farm, and both those clauses are in my boarding contract.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
        That's why you buy a liability policy for your horse. To cover any legal fees and damage he may do.

        The care, custody and control (boarder insurance) is necessary to protect the barn owner. Are you paying board too? If so, the insurance is almost always included in the monthly board payment.
        Yup, the liability policy should cover the legal fees.

        And yes, the insurance is usually included in the board fees. HOWEVER, the OP said that she is the ONLY person who will be boarding. In that instance, I can understand a flat, one-time fee to pay the insurance (which will be needed the day her horse sets foot on the property, not months down the line when the barn owner can collect it from the board fee).

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        • #5
          Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
          That's why you buy a liability policy for your horse. To cover any legal fees and damage he may do.

          The care, custody and control (boarder insurance) is necessary to protect the barn owner. Are you paying board too? If so, the insurance is almost always included in the monthly board payment.
          The farm owner would need liability insurance added. CCC is not the same as liability. CCC covers the loss of the horse and if you have mortality on the horse I believe that kicks in first.

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          • #6
            If you are planning on keeping tack, grooming equipment, etc. at the boarding barn, make sure you have coverage via your homeowner's insurance in case of loss or theft.
            My horses recently survived a barn fire in which I lost all my horse stuff--for 4 horses. But my homeowner's insurance will pay for a lot of it. Those who didn't have it aren't covered, because our boarding contract specified that we were responsible for our own equipment.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Jasmine
              Looks reasonable to me, except the part where they ask you to pay their insurance. Unless they're not charging you much for board. The board cost should cover the insurance.
              With only one boarder, it is highly likely that the insurance premium will be too high for the arrangement to make sense for the barn owner, unless the boarder pays the insurance.
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              • #8
                And keep in mind that the $550 for boarder liability insurance is AN ANNUAL PREMIUM, not a one-time payment. Personally this arrangement does not sound like a very good deal to me. I take boarders and I don't expect them to pay the annual premium for my CGL's CCC or any other aspect of the insurance separately. Insurance is built into my overhead costs. It would be better to find a barn where insurance is part of the overhead and included in the board pricing. The advice to get a personal equine liability policy is good and I would do that. Just find a different place to board.
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