LOWELL SMITH ET AL. v. STEPHEN DOUGLAS PHILLIPS, ET AL. (Tenn. Ct. App. March 30, 2010)
A man was bitten by a horse while on a trail ride with friends. He sued the owner of the horse that bit him, claiming that the owner had failed to properly restrain or control his animal. The trial court granted summary judgment to the owner, ruling that he was entitled to immunity under the Equine Activities Act, Tenn. Code Ann. section 44-20-101 et seq. The Act must be strictly construed, since it is in derogation of common law. We hold that under a strict construction of the act, the defendant is not entitled to immunity, and we accordingly reverse the trial court.
Opinion may be found at: