Judge: Horse Can’t Sue Former Owner

An Oregon judge has ruled that a horse, now called Justice, cannot sue his former owner for damages connected to alleged neglect. The Animal Legal Defense Fund plans to appeal.
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Last year, Justice's owner surrendered him to a rescue organization. | Photo: Courtesy of the Animal Legal Defense Fund

An Oregon judge has ruled that a horse, now called Justice, cannot sue his former owner for damages connected to alleged neglect.

Last year, his owner surrendered the 8-year-old Quarter Horse to a rescue organization. In May, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) filed a personal injury complaint against the former owner on Justice’s behalf. The suit was seeking $100,000 on grounds that while Justice is now in better health, the months of neglect he suffered caused permanent injuries that will require specialized veterinary care for the rest of his life.

On Sept. 17, Washington County Circuit court Pro Tem Judge John S. Knowles dismissed the case on grounds that Justice lacked the legal status or qualification needed to assert legal rights under the law

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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