Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Types of Breeding Contracts

Breeding contracts, or stallion service agreements, will inevitable be used during the breeding season. These contracts are typically prepared by the stallion owners or breeding facilities. The breeding contract details the various fees associated with breeding the mare to the stallion. It also details the various services to be performed by the stallion owner/breeding facility while the mare is in their care. Therefore, a mare owner must make it a point to review each contract thoroughly to determine what type of contract it is.

There are several types of breeding contracts but three that are regularly used.  The first type of breeding contract is a guaranteed live foal contract. This type of contract provides a warranty to the mare owner that there will be a live foal.  Generally, a foal that has the ability to stand and nurse without assistance is considered a live foal.  If the mare fails to produce a live foal from the stallion, the stallion owner will rebreed the same mare to the stallion without charging a stud fee. The mare owner will, however, be charged the other fees that come with breeding: mare care, fees shipped semen fees, collection fees, container fees, and various veterinary fees.

The second type of breeding contract is an in foal contract. This contract is a variation of the guaranteed live foal contract. Typically, this type of contract indicates that the mare owner will pay the stud fee only after the mare is determined to be in foal.  However, the stallion owner does not provide any warranty that the mare will have a live foal.  Thus, if the mare does not have a live foal, the stallion owner is not required to rebreed the mare free of charge or repay the stud fee.

The third type of breeding contract is a no guarantee contract.  These contacts indicate that the mare owner will pay a non-refundable stud fee before the mare is bred. Further, the stallion owner does not guarantee that the mare is either in foal or that the mare will have a live foal. Thus, if the mare does not have a foal, the mare owner will not be entitled to a rebreeding at the stallion owner’s expense.

These are only three of the most common types of breeding contracts used in the industry. There are several other forms of breeding contracts that can be used such as mare lease agreements, foal sharing agreements, and more.  If you need help determining which type of breeding contract you are reading or which type of contract is most appropriate for you, contact an attorney that specializes in equine law. They can help guide you through the details of these documents and provide insight into what is appropriate to protect your future four-legged interest. 

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