SAMUEL KIRKPATRICK, JR., ET AL. VS. HIDDEN
VIEW FARM AND DOROTHY NESTI
This appeal concerns whether the personal injury liability immunity the Legislature created under the Equestrian Activities Liability Act (the "Equine Act"), N.J.S.A. 5:15-1 to 12, applies to a minor who accompanied family members to a horse farm but who did not personally take part in any horse-related activity there. The minor was bitten by another boarder's horse as he walked by its stall. His mother was nearby in the stable at the time, cleaning out the adjacent stall of her own horse.
The trial court held that the Equine Act's statutory immunity applied to this situation, and granted summary judgment to the defendant horse farm and its owner. We agree with the court that although the minor did not ride or take care of any horses the day he was bitten, his role in accompanying his mother and sister, who were engaged themselves in such equine activities, placed him within the immunity statute's broad definition of a covered "participant," N.J.S.A. 5:15-2. Consequently, we affirm.