Equine Law

Schmaltz Law Offices is ready to meet the business needs of equine owners, trainers, riders, events and facilities.

Horse Business & Contracts

  • Pre-sale agreements
  • Purchase/Sale Agreements
  • Breeding Contracts
  • Training Contracts
  • Lease Agreements
  • Horse Partnership Ownership Agreements
  • Transportation Agreements
  • Contract Disputes

Stable and Boarding Contracts

  • Stablemen’s Lien Laws
  • Boarding Contracts
  • Waivers and Releases
  • Veterinary Emergencies
  • Horse Trainers – Care, Custody and Control


  • Personal Injury
  • Sales & Purchases
  • Property Damage
  • Fraud
  • Misrepresentation
  • Veterinary Malpractice

Equine Activity Liability Act in Arizona

The starting point is Arizona's Equine Activity Liability Act – A.R.S. 12-553 Limited Liability of Equine Owners and Owners of Equine Facilities – Exceptions & Definitions

A. An equine owner or an agent of an equine owner who regardless of consideration allows another person to take control of an equine is not liable for an injury to or the death of the person if:

  1. The person has taken control of the equine from the owner or agent when the injury or death occurs.
  2. The person or the parent or legal guardian of the person if the person is under eighteen years of age has signed a release before taking control of the equine.
  3. The owner or agent has properly installed suitable tack or equipment or the person has personally tacked the equine with tack the person owned, leased or borrowed. If the person has personally tacked the equine, the person assumes full responsibility for the suitability, installation and condition of the tack.
  4. The owner or agent assigns the person to a suitable equine based on a reasonable interpretation of the person's representation of his skills, health and experience with and knowledge of equines.

B. Subsection A does not apply to an equine owner or agent of the equine owner who is grossly negligent or commits wilful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.

C. An owner, lessor or agent of any riding stable, rodeo ground, training or boarding stable or other private property that is used by a rider or handler of an equine with or without the owner's permission is not liable for injury to or death of the equine or the rider or handler.

D. Subsection C does not apply to an owner, lessor or agent of any riding stable, rodeo ground, training or boarding stable or other private property that is used by a rider or handler of an equine if either of the following applies:

  1. The owner, lessor or agent knows or should know that a hazardous condition exists and the owner, lessor or agent fails to disclose the hazardous condition to a rider or handler of an equine.
  2. The owner, lessor or agent is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.

E. As used in this section:

  1. "Equine" means a horse, pony, mule, donkey or ass.
  2.  "Release" means a document that a person signs before taking control of an equine from the owner or owner's agent and that acknowledges that the person is aware of the inherent risks associated with equine activities, is willing and able to accept full responsibility for his own safety and welfare and releases the equine owner or agent from liability unless the equine owner or agent is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.


Bankruptcy, never thought it would be you, right?Most people filing BK’s these days never thought it would happen to them.  They had good jobs, always paid their bills on time, and were the friend or family member that others always came to for help. Then it changed: job loss, medical issues, or credit card companies suddenly changing interest rates or debt limits.  These are events that none of us can control but must adapt to and move on as best we can.  So forget feeling guilty or embarrassed. Instead, learn about bankruptcy and what it can do for you.It may be time to consider bankruptcy if you are:

  • Harassed by creditors
  • Paying one credit card with another
  • Using cash advances to pay the bills
  • Struggling to make your mortgage payments
  • At risk of losing your home to foreclosure
  • Making only the minimum balance on your credit cards
  • Dipping into retirement accounts, like IRAs and 401k loans, just to make ends meet
  • Trying to save your home with a loan modification or HAMP program
  • Late on vehicle payments or fearing repossession
  • Losingmoney to awage garnishments
  • Sued for credit cards debt, repossessed vehicles or debts
  • Late mortgage, car or tax payments
  • Experiencing job loss, work furloughs, pay cuts and discontinued unemployment compensation

Chapter 7 - liquidation

If you are having financial difficulties and are unable to pay your bill, filing a chapter 7 can help.  It is known as the fresh start bankruptcy because you are asking the court to “discharge” as much of your debt as possible. It is important to know not all types of debt are dischargeable. Domestic support obligations, student loans and some taxes and co-signers or guarantors of debt may still be liable.  In return for no longer being personally liable for that debt, you agree to keep only basic property, such as a house, car, household items etc., up to a certain value. If there are liens on those items, you must continue to pay those obligations if you want to keep it. These items are “exempt” or protected.  If you have other items that are “non-exempt” property, you may be required to turn them over to your case Trustee who will sell it and use the money to pay your creditors.I can help you understand this fine line between protected and unprotected property and will spend time reviewing this critical area of law with you so you know what to expect, what is at risk, and how a chapter 7 may impact you and your family.

Animal Law

Animal law is a broad term to describe the legal issues surround large and small animals, domesticated and wild.  Schmaltz Law Offices focuses on legal issues involving domesticated animal, such as dogs, cats and horses and the people who love and care for them.  

This includes the varied issues:  

  • Custody issues between pet’s owners
  • Transactional issues by/with pet breeders
  • Pet boarding claims for injured, missing and deceased pets
  • Veterinarian malpractice negligence claims
  • Claims against groomers, trainers and transporters