On 31 March the Court of Appeal in the Hague decided that it is up to the seller– in this case a Dutch trading stable which sold a dressage horse to our Israeli client – to prove that the horse was healthy at time of purchase and was not yet suffering from a chronic tendon injury.
The Court of Appeal decided that – contrary to the Court of first instance in Dordrecht – the fact that there is an animal involved which suffers from a tendon injury cannot oppose the application of Article 7:18 of the Dutch civil code. Now this tendon injury revealed itself within 6 months after purchase (in a professional seller vs. consumer buyer relationship) Dutch law presumes that the tendon injury was already present at the time of sale and it is up to the seller to prove otherwise.
If the other party fails to do so, the claims of our client will be awarded. This means the horse has to go back to the seller and our client receives full restitution of the purchase price and other costs like veterinary and stabling costs.
In this procedure our client was represented by mr. Vincent Zitman of Schelstraete Equine Lawyers (EUAEL Alliance Partner)
To be continued.
Click here to read the verdict of the Court (Dutch available only)