This sets out the terms of business upon which we, Rossdales LLP, will provide equine veterinary services.
Our commitment to you
We aim to provide you with a first class service. We aim to provide your horse/pony/donkey with the highest standard of veterinary treatment and care.
All professional fees, consumables and charges for drugs and services are subject to VAT at the current rate. Fee levels are determined by the time spent on a case, the level of intensity of investigation and treatment used, the expertise required and the technical equipment used, in addition to the costs of drugs, materials and consumables used.
A fee will be charged for completing insurance forms from insurance companies. This fee reflects the time that we have to invest in completing this paperwork. A standard fee will be charged per insurance claim.
You will understand that quite often the investigation and treatment of accident, illness and injury does not follow a predictable “standard” course, and therefore costs may vary. Where complex or costly investigation and treatment is anticipated, we will endeavour to discuss this with you. If specifically requested, we will provide you with a written estimate. We will also endeavour to inform you of significant changes from those first estimated throughout the progress of each case investigation/treatment. Please be aware that where unexpected problems and complications occur, costs are likely to increase.
Invoicing and payment terms
An itemised invoice will be produced at the conclusion of investigation and/or treatment. Established, registered clients of Rossdales LLP will normally be invoiced at the end of each month, or sooner, if the investigation and/or treatment has been concluded.
Our payment terms for established registered clients are strictly within 30 days. In the absence of prior written agreement to the contrary, payment of our charges is required on receipt of our invoice. We reserve the right to charge interest on all overdue accounts. The current rate is 1.4 % per month. In the event of non-payment we may refer your account to a debt collection agency and their fees will be added to your debt and will be payable by you. Similarly, in the event that court action is necessary all associated costs will be levied to you. Clients referred to the hospital or diagnostic centre will normally be invoiced at the conclusion of investigation/ treatment, and payment in full will be expected at this time (usually when your horse is discharged from the hospital) unless otherwise agreed – for example where your horse is covered for veterinary fees by a valid insurance policy. Where significant fees (>£3,000 incl. VAT per incident) are incurred during prolonged hospitalisation, an ‘interim’ invoice may be submitted, and interim payment may be required. For non-insured horses where significant fees are likely to be encountered a deposit (normally credit or debit card payment) may be requested at the time of admission.
Methods of payment
The following methods are acceptable:
- Cards: Switch, Solo, Mastercard, Visa, Delta.
- BACS: For this method please see our bank details on your invoice, or contact our office.
- Cheque: All cheques should be made payable to ‘Rossdales LLP’.
Inability to pay
If for any reason you anticipate being unable to settle your account in full at the time that your horse is discharged from our care, we ask that you discuss this matter with us as soon as possible. In exceptional circumstances only, part payment or payment by instalments on account (normally a standing order) may be arranged at the discretion of the partners only.
Rossdales LLP strongly supports the principle of insuring your horse/pony/donkey against unexpected accident, illness or injury. For all routine referrals you must inform your insurance company prior to your appointment that you have been referred to Rossdales LLP and the nature of the condition/proposed treatment. In the case of an emergency or a first opinion case the insurance company should be contacted at the earliest opportunity. Most insurance companies will require us to complete a claim form to be signed by the attending vet and returned to them together with a copy of the veterinary report and invoice. It is sometimes possible for us to accept direct payment of claims from some insurance companies, as long as your insurance claim form is appropriately signed, you have instructed your insurance company to pay Rossdales LLP directly, and providing the insurance company have agreed the claim in principle. Please be aware that the cost of some aspects of your horses care may not be covered by insurance (e.g. policy excess, hospitalisation). These costs, together with any costs subsequently rejected by your insurance company, and any fees over the insured amount must be paid directly to Rossdales LLP by you. Regardless of whether the horse is insured or not, the entire bill remains your responsibility until it is paid in full.
It is a legal requirement that all horses, ponies and donkeys must have a valid passport. This must accompany your horse/pony/donkey during transport, and we will ask to check this at the time of admission/examination. You must endorse your passport (normally section IX) to confirm whether the horse is/is not intended for human consumption. If your horse’s passport is presented to us unsigned, we reserve the right to sign section IX (not intended for human consumption). This will allow us to treat the horse according to its clinical needs and to ensure that it never enters the human food chain. In exceptional circumstances, where a passport is not available, a detailed record of medicinal products administered to your horse will be retained. You will need to keep a record of this treatment. This information is provided on your invoice.
Ownership of records
All records, images and tissue samples acquired during the course of clinical investigation and/or treatment shall remain the property of Rossdales LLP. This accumulated information may be used for the purposes of clinical research and veterinary education, including publications and presentations at professional or lay person meetings. Information used for such purposes will be completely anonymised such that no identifying data (client or horse name) will be apparent.
Rossdales LLP recognise that client confidentiality is of the utmost importance. We will not intentionally pass any of your personal identifiable details to third parties without your permission, unless required to do so upon humane grounds for animal welfare. We will however endeavour to maintain that we have your correct details on our databases and ask that you, the client, provide us with your correct and updated personal information. This will allow us to provide services to you. The information we require will include your name and contact details, details of your horse/pony/donkey and details of any veterinary surgeon who has previously looked after them. You have a right of access, under data protection legislation, to the personal data that we hold about you. We confirm that when processing data on your behalf that we will comply with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998.
We are always pleased to receive feedback on the services which we provide and this should be addressed to the senior clinician in charge of your horse/pony/donkey.
Whilst we strive to provide your horse with the best possible standard of care, we recognise that on occasion you may feel that we don’t get it right! Often the heart of many problems is poor communication, so if you have any grievance please discuss this with us at the first opportunity. If you wish to make a complaint, please do so in writing, to our Managing Partner in the first instance. If you have any cause to dispute the fees on your invoice please send written notice to our Credit Controller, within 7 days of receiving your invoice.
Additions and variations to these terms and conditions
No addition or variation of these conditions will bind Rossdales LLP unless it is specifically agreed in writing and signed by one of the practice partners. No agent or person employed by, or under contract with the practice has the authority to alter or vary these conditions in any way.
These terms and conditions do not affect your statutory rights.