Equine Legal Services

Equine Litigation

Beethe Law represents both plaintiffs and defendants in many different types of horse related lawsuits. The horse business is unique, and through many years of experience, we understand the nuances. For over 25 years, we have assisted clients in a variety of Equine Law litigation disputes, and we are there every step of the way to ensure our clients have the best representation as possible.

Beethe Law is a full-service litigation firm, and through our extensive experience, representing clients in a  wide variety of legal issues, we have successfully represented our clients through every stage of the litigation process.  We offer an initial free consultation on legal matters for persons who are residents of Arizona. Consultations can be scheduled by clicking on the “Free Consultation” tab on the homepage.

Business Formation

Beethe Law advises clients throughout the business formation and creation process.  We strive to make this process quick and affordable for our clients.  This includes more than just formation of the company, but also drafting of Operating Agreements, Buy-Sell Agreements, Employment Agreement and everything else related to operating your business.  Our assistance doesn’t stop there, as we continue to support our clients through all aspects of business operation.  We have been providing this service for many years for all types of clients, not just clients in the equine industry.

Contract Drafting

Beethe Law assists its clients in drafting contracts addressing all aspects of the horse industry.  We offer packages to our clients, to assist them in bringing their business into compliance with applicable laws and, most importantly, to reduce exposure related to your equine operations.  Common examples of these contract packages are for boarding/training operations (boarding agreement, training agreement, liability release), marketing groups (purchase agreement, lease agreement, agency agreement) and breeding farms (breeding contracts, fee agreement).

We understand that everyone’s situation is different. We strive to understand the specifics of your situation, and to tailor a contract that is specifically for you. We prepare these contracts to make it easy for the clients to use on a regular basis, and these agreements provide an immense amount of protection, when properly drafted and utilized.

Agister’s Liens

We understand that late and non-paying clients can be very detrimental to a stable, boarding barn or training facility. In an effort to help stables with these issues, we are prepared to assist you in collection of these past-due amounts.  Often those collection efforts end in pursuing the stable, boarding barn or training facility’s rights under the state Agister’s Lien statutes.

An Agister’s lien is an automatic lien upon the horse, created by state law, which places a lien on any horse for which the stable, boarding barn or training facility provided feed or care.  The manner in which you “perfect” or foreclose on the Agister’s Lien is dictated by state law, and it must be followed in order protect your rights.  Ultimately, if handled properly, the Agister’s Lien can help stables, boarding barns and training facilities collect on their past-due board bills. Beethe Law has experience drafting and executing an Agister’s lien for stables of all sizes, and has pursued clients’ rights under Agister’s Liens in court over 100 times.

Buying and Selling Horses

We assist and represent buyers, sellers, sales agents, and trainers throughout the United States and in virtually every breed and discipline in regard to buying and selling horses. Buying and selling a horse is a very involved process in which there can be major implications for any/all decisions that must be made throughout the process. We have experience helping people throughout the entire buying/selling process and are there every step of the way to provide guidance whenever an issue or questions arises.

In addition, a multitude of issues can arise when buying and selling horses internationally. We have experience working with individuals who have purchased or sold their horses outside of the United States. We provide guidance every step of the away to help avoid legal disputes that may arise along the way.

Horse Insurance Disputes

Whether a horse is purchased for personal or business reasons, ownership represents a significant investment of time, money and resources. Many insurance companies offer policies to help protect owners from financial loss should something significant happen to your horse. Because the specifics of each policy can vary so much, it is hard to tell what is and isn’t covered by your insurance company. If you’re in the decision stage, we can help advise you in choose the best insurance coverage for your needs. We also represent individuals who are currently involved in, or wish to begin legal action against their insurance company for denying them coverage.

Administrative Hearings (Equine Organizations)

Nearly every horse show or competition is governed by an equine organization, such as the US Equestrian Federation.  When you enter those shows, you agree to subject yourself to that organization’s rules and regulations.  Inevitably, there are rule violations, some of which are significant and require hearings.  Beethe Law has represented individuals in front of a variety of organizations, on a variety of claimed violations.  Examples include alleged amateur or ownership rule violations, drug violations, claims of abuse and unsportsmanlike conduct, just to name a few.   We have the knowledge or the organization rules, and how the hearing process works.  We vigorously defend our clients, with the goal of achieving the best result possible.

Tax Issues and Audits

The horse industry seems to attract scrutiny from the IRS and state departments of revenue.  We have successfully represented individuals and horse businesses in defending claims brought by these taxing agencies.  The most common issue is when the taxing agency claims violation of the “Hobby Loss Rule”, where the individual or entity does not conduct their horse operation as a true business, but instead as a hobby.  We are well versed in the key issues that are evaluated by the IRS, and assist in presenting a solid case for our clients.

Dispute Resolution / Mediation

Mike Beethe of Beethe Law is a Maricopa County Judge Pro Tem, and regularly assists with dispute resolution of pending cases.  This is primarily done through mediations or settlement conferences, and the goal is to resolve the case before protracted litigation.  Mike’s legal experience, combined with his life-long involvement in the horse industry, make him uniquely qualified to serve as a mediator in a wide variety of equine law disputes.