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I would like to know how I can ride my horse over a

Customer Question
Hi, I would like...

Hi, I would like to know how I can ride my horse over a neighbours farm without him worrying about health and safety. I have been told recently that I can’t ride over the farm because of health and safety concerns and it’s my only place to ride.

Lawyer's Assistant: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.

I’m in Hawkes Bay

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?

I haven’t taken any because when you are told you can’t go onto a place because of health and safety concerns there’s little to be done that I know of. I rang Worksafe and they weren’t helpful, it’s all about complying not trying to circumvent the system.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I am a retired person who has been able to walk my horse over this farm for the past 4 years. The grazing manager doesn’t like me for purely personal reasons so he’s being difficult when he says there is a H&S issue. But I wondered if there was some legal indemnity thing or insurance that I could take out which would remove the issue?

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: New Zealand Law
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Answered in 1 minute by:
3/26/2018
Solicitor: Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer replied 3 months ago
Chris The Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 23,766
Experience: 38 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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I am a New Zealand lawyer based in Wellington and will help you with your question today. Please give me a minute to read the question

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Solicitor: Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Unfortunately the issue of health and safety on farms has become a lot more complicated. Worksafe New Zealand, who enforce the health and safety legislation, have become more active about prosecuting where the farmer has not maintained appropriate safety standards. I understand that the farm manager may be raising this to be difficult because he doesn't like you, but there are in fact real concerns.

So if you were to tell them that you are prepared to sign an indemnity which meant that you agreed that if any accident occurred, they would not be responsible anyway under the legislation, that may be sufficient.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
where would I get such a form or is it one customised by a legal person such as yourself please?
Solicitor: Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

I think the important question will be whether the grazing manager will agree to let you ride even if you sign an indemnity. I could make some suggestions to put to him if you want

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Solicitor: Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

An additional problem is the Health and Safety at Work Act which says

28 No contracting out

A term of any agreement or contract that purports to exclude, limit, or modify the operation of this Act, or any duty owed under this Act, or to transfer to another person any duty owed under this Act—

(a) has no effect to the extent that it does so; but

(b) is not an illegal contract under subpart 5 of Part 2 of the Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017.

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Solicitor: Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Of course, as a visitor rather than a worker they do not directly owe you any duty of care. So the indemnity should be sufficient depending on whether the grace manager cooperates

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