Horseback riding in the valleys of California and dedicated trails can be relaxing and therapeutic for many people. At the same time, it is also an excellent hobby for others who like to spend their spare time doing what they love. No matter how enjoyable horseback riding can be for many, the activity has certain risks.
Ehline Law and our personal injury attorneys have extensive experience (more than 15 years) and a superior track record (over $150 million in recoveries) in pursuing personal injury cases on behalf of our clients.
Contact our equestrian accident attorneys to learn more about your rights if you’ve suffered injuries during recreational horseback riding.
How Do Horseback Riding Accidents Occur in California?
Horseback riding accidents can occur during horse riding competitions, horseback rides during private events, trail expeditions, and many other activities.
Horseback riding accidents can happen when the coach or company is negligent and does not provide necessary safety gear or training before a horseback ride. Lack of safety gear and training can result in serious horseback riding accidents, leading to injuries.
Common Horseback Riding Injuries
Most horseback riding accidents involve the rider falling from the horse. The type of injuries sustained in a horseback riding incident depends on how the rider falls and the kind of ground the rider falls on. However, severe injuries can occur when a horse tramples on the rider after the rider falls.
The following are some of the common types of horseback riding injuries one can sustain in a horseback riding accident:
- Broken back and bones
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Dislocated joints
- Affected vision
- Head injuries and concussions
- Bites, lacerations, and bruises
When a rider suffers from horse-related injuries after their horseback riding accident, it is essential that they seek immediate help. Horseback riding injuries can deteriorate over time and lead to medical complications or infections if not treated as soon as possible.
Who Is Liable for Your Horseback Riding Accident?
When you partake in horseback riding activity, you must always sign a waiver that releases the coach or the company from any liability in case of a horseback riding accident.
After an accident occurs and the rider suffers injuries, they often do not pursue a horseback riding accident lawsuit as they believe they do not have the right to do so after signing the waiver. However, that is not always the case.
A recreational horseback rental company or a coach cannot shield itself from liability by signing a waiver, especially if their negligence results in injuries to the rider.
When riding horses, you expect a smooth and fun experience with the safety aspects of things the coach or company takes care of. However, when a company is negligent and does not provide proper safety, it cannot escape liability if injuries occur.
Injured victims can pursue a personal injury lawsuit for horse-related injuries against the Horseback rental agencies in the following situations:
- The horseback rental company fails to properly train the horse, putting the riders’ lives in danger.
- The horse riding company cuts corners on equipment, leading to horseback riding accidents.
- The horse riding coach fails to match the rider with a horse with a similar experience.
- The horse riding company or coach mistreats the animals, making them aggressive, which can disrupt the ride.
- The horse riding rental agencies fail to warn riders of the aggressive nature of particular horses, especially the previous history of accidents, putting the riders at risk.
- The property owner fails to remove any hazards on the trail or the premises to prevent accidents.
- The coach is negligent in training the horse adequately.
- The coach lets riders ride injured horses, increasing the risk of horseback riding accidents.
Not all horseback riding injuries may lead to a valid lawsuit. Still, typically, it is the responsibility of the horseback riding company to ensure the safety of their guests and members.
Injured victims may be able to recover compensation for their horseback riding injuries due to the negligence of the horse-riding company or their employees.
However, pursuing a horseback riding accident claim can be challenging as collecting evidence and proving the defendant’s negligence can be difficult. Injured victims need to reach out to experienced horseback riding accident attorneys to discuss their cases and learn more about their legal options.
Damages You May Recover in Horseback Riding Settlement
Many horseback riding accidents lead to severe injuries requiring medical treatment, which can be expensive.
If you’ve suffered horseback riding-related injuries due to another’s negligence, it is unfair for you to bear the financial burden of medical treatment and other hardships, which is why you need to pursue a horseback riding claim against the property or horse owner.
Injured horseback riders may recover the following compensatory damages to make them whole again after sustaining injuries in an accident.
A horse-related accident can lead to out-of-pocket expenses for which injured horseback riders may recover compensation, and these include the following:
Whether you’ve suffered a minor head injury or major traumatic injuries, you may recover medical expenses such as hospitalization, medication, therapy, and other medical bills when bringing a claim.
Injured riders may be able to pursue current, past, and future medical expenses associated with their horseback riding injuries.
A horseback riding accident can put you out of work for days, weeks, or even months, depending on the severity of the injuries.
In some cases involving permanent injuries, the injured rider may be unable to return to work, leading to severe financial hardships. Under personal injury law, injured riders may recover current and past lost income and future loss of earning potential.
Although property damage in horseback riding accidents is uncommon, it may occur for which victims can recover compensation.
Besides out-of-pocket expenses incurred following their horse-related accidents, injured victims may also recover non-economic damages, compensating them for the subjective losses, such as pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and reduced quality of life.
Under California law, surviving family members may pursue a wrongful death claim following the loss of their loved ones in horse-related deaths. In a wrongful death claim, the eligible parties may be able to recover funeral and burial costs, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.
Injured victims must assess and evaluate the damages when pursuing personal injury claims following equestrian accidents, which can be challenging.
In most cases, victims leave monetary damages on the table as they don’t have the expertise needed to determine the value of their claims, which puts them in further financial hardship.
It is crucial for injured riders to work with experienced personal injury attorneys to help calculate the damages incurred and aggressively pursue them against the negligent party’s insurance company on their behalf.
Is There a Deadline for Pursuing a Horseback Riding Accident Claim?
The California statute of limitations determines how long injured victims have to pursue claims or lawsuits following their horse riding accidents. In most cases, injured horseback riders have two years from the date of their injury to file a claim against the negligent party’s insurance company to obtain monetary damages.
However, certain exceptions can place a pause on the statute of limitations, such as horse riding accidents involving minors where the statute of limitations begins after the minor turns 18 years.
How Can Ehline Law Personal Injury Attorneys Help with Your Equestrian Accident Lawsuit
Ehline Law is an aggressive and reputable personal injury law firm operating in California since 2005. We’ve helped injured victims seek the compensation they deserve after they’ve suffered injuries due to another’s negligence.
Here are a few ways our California personal injury attorneys can help with your equestrian accident lawsuit.
We Have the Resources and Expertise
Ehline Law has the resources and expertise to evaluate the value of a claim. We have skilled personal injury attorneys who work with medical professionals and use prior case verdicts to determine the value of damages incurred.
We Can Build a Trial-ready Case
When pursuing a lawsuit against a horse owner or property owner, it is essential to establish the elements of negligence: duty, breach, causation, and damages.
Our personal injury attorneys can help gather the evidence required to build a strong personal injury claim and increase your chances of recovering compensation.
We Can Aggressively Handle the Insurer
After pursuing a personal injury claim, injured victims hit a barrier with the insurance company and their claims adjuster, who uses all the tricks in the book to reduce or deny compensation.
They’ll lowball a settlement offer and force victims without legal representation into accepting it. With our aggressive litigators on your side, insurance companies won’t even think about making a ridiculous offer.
We Have Successful Trial Experience
Ehline Law and our personal injury attorneys have exceptional trial experience making us one of the fiercest attorneys in California. We’re not afraid to drag the defendant and their insurance company to court if they don’t offer a fair settlement.
Schedule a Free Consultation with Horse Rider Accident Lawyers
If you’ve suffered a serious injury in a horseback riding accident, contact us at (833) LETS-SUE for a free consultation, as you may be able to seek compensation.