Terms and conditions of business
Newnham Court Equine Terms and Conditions of Business
This details the Trading Terms and Conditions of Kent Equine Hospital Limited, trading as Newnham Court Equine (Company no. 11152125) whose registered office is Newnham Court Equine Clinic, Bearsted Road, Weavering, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 5LH.
This sets out the terms of business upon which we, Newnham Court Equine (NCE), will provide equine veterinary services. By instructing us to perform services, or by purchasing or ordering goods, you are making an offer and you are confirming that you agree to these terms of business. If we accept your instruction, purchase or order, a legally binding contract is made between us and you. We reserve the right to alter these Terms and Conditions of business.
Our commitment to you
We aim to provide you with a first class, caring and professional service. We aim to provide your horse/pony/donkey (“animal”) with the highest standard of veterinary diagnostics, 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 the case, the expertise required, the technical equipment used, the level of intensity of investigation and treatment used, in addition to the cost of drugs, materials and consumables used. Some example fees for routine services are available on our website. You will receive a detailed receipted invoice for every consultation, surgical procedure or transaction with us.
We charge a reasonable fee for completing insurance forms from insurance companies; this fee reflects the time that we have to invest in completing the paperwork and the time taken by administrative staff to process the claims. Direct claims are at the discretion of the Director and pre-authorisation will be required.
You agree to pay to Newnham Court Equine all costs and expenses that may be incurred whilst your animal is under NCE care. You understand that if complications occur, the costs, which you will be liable for, may well be in excess of those first anticipated.
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 and be difficult to predict accurately. Where complex and costly investigation and treatment is anticipated, we will discuss this with you and provide you with an estimate where possible. If specifically requested, we will provide you with a written estimate but, unless stated to the contrary, such an estimate will be for guidance only. We will endeavour to inform you of significant changes from the estimate throughout the progress of each case investigation/treatment. Depending on the treatment/investigation process, this may not be possible. 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 each consultation at your yard/home or at the conclusion of investigation and/or treatment at the clinic. Established, registered clients of NCE will be invoiced the same or following day, or when the investigation/treatment has been concluded. Unless otherwise agreed by the Director, clients will PAY AT THE TIME OF THE YARD/HOME VISIT or AT DISCHARGE FROM THE CLINIC for hospitalised cases.
Where the fees are anticipated to exceed £3000 incl. VAT (per incident) for prolonged hospitalisation, an ‘interim’ invoice will be submitted, and interim payment required.
All cases admitted to the clinic for investigation/treatment will be requested at time of admission to pay a deposit of £500 (normally by credit or debit card), regardless of insurance. For major investigations, such as colic surgery, a deposit of £1000 will be required at admission.
Unless we otherwise advise, our INVOICES ARE PAYABLE ON RECEIPT.
The current rate of interest charged is 2.5% per month and this interest will accrue on any amount outstanding from the due date until actual payment. In the event of non-payment, you will be liable for our costs of recovery (including legal fees) and in addition we may refer your account to a debt collection agency and their fees will also be added to your debt and will be payable by you. In the event that court action is necessary, all associated costs, including legal fees, will be claimed from you and these additional costs are likely to increase the debt owed to Newnham Court Equine.
METHODS OF PAYMENT
The following methods are acceptable:
- Cards: Visa, Mastercard.
- BACS: For this method, please see our bank details on your invoice, or contact our Practice Manager.
- Cheques (which should be made payable to Kent Equine Hospital Limited) will only be accepted at the discretion of Kent Equine Hospital, trading as Newnham Court Equine.
INABILITY TO PAY
If for any reason, you anticipate being unable to settle your account in full at the time of the visit, on receipt of invoice or when the animal is discharged from the clinic, we ask that you discuss the matter as soon as possible with our Practice Manager. Please note that instalments or part payments (normally a standing order) of any account are only considered in EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES and may ONLY be sanctioned at the discretion of the Director, subject to a credit check. Account queries should be directed to Mrs. Laura Hawkins, Practice Manager, on 01622 737884 available 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday.
Newnham Court Equine strongly supports the principle of insuring animals against unexpected accident, illness or injury. For all investigations/treatment you must inform your insurance company prior to your appointment regarding the nature of the condition/proposed treatment. In the case of emergency, the insurance company should be contacted at the earliest opportunity.
Most insurance companies require us to complete a claim form to be signed by the attending vet and returned to them with a copy of the veterinary report/history and invoice. Direct claims are at the discretion of the Director and pre-authorisation will be required. If not, full settlement will be required at the time. Provided that the insurance company has AGREED THE CLAIM IN PRINCIPLE, and that you have not made payment to us direct in advance of a claim, we require that payments of claims by insurance companies are made direct to us. To fulfil this requirement you must ensure that your insurance form is appropriately signed and you have instructed your insurance company to pay Newnham Court Equine directly. If an insurance claim takes longer than 42 days from date the claim was received to make payment, you will be responsible for all costs immediately. Please be aware that the cost of some aspects of the animal’s 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 by you to Newnham Court Equine. Regardless of whether the animal is insured, the entire bill remains your responsibility until it is paid in full. A belief or understanding on your part that your insurers will meet some or all of our charges will not be a defence in respect of any claim we make against you for non-payment. Correspondingly, credit will be given to you in respect of any payment we receive from a third party (including an insurance company) on your behalf in circumstances where the relevant payment is intended to meet or partially meet financial obligations of you to Newnham Court Equine.
It is a legal requirement that all horses, ponies and donkeys must have a valid passport. This must accompany the animal during transport, and we will ask to check this at the time of examination or admission to the clinic. You must endorse your passport (normally Section IX in an old passport and section II in a new passport) to confirm whether the animal is/is not intended for human consumption. If your animal’s passport is presented to us unsigned we reserve the right to sign this as not intended for human consumption. This will allow us to treat the animal 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 the animal will be retained. You will need to keep a record of this treatment. This information is provided on your invoice.
ROUTINE BIOSECURITY SCREENING
Newnham Court Equine has facilities for managing horses with contagious disease and it is not likely your horse will come in contact with such individuals. However, certain diseases involve silent carrier states and affected animals may show no clinical signs and be a risk to others. In the clinic situation, this risk is similar to that encountered in other situations where there is mixing of horses and ponies such as shows or other competitions. Except where your animal is being investigated for contagious disease, there are normally no costs associated with this process of routine biosecurity screening and results are not generally shared with clients.
You may obtain Prescription Only Medicines (Category POM-V or POM-VPS) from us OR you may request a written prescription to enable you to obtain these medicines from another veterinary surgeon or pharmacy. A fee will be charged to issue a written prescription. Your veterinary surgeon may prescribe Category POM-V or POM-VPS medicines only for animals under his/her care. The veterinary surgeon may only prescribe the minimum amount of product needed for the treatment course. A prescription may not be appropriate if your animal is an in-patient or immediate treatment is necessary. You will be informed on request of the price of any medicine that may be prescribed for your animal. Our Company policy is to re-assess an animal requiring repeat prescriptions every six (6) months, but this may vary with individual circumstances, and therefore could be less than six months. A consultation fee will be charged in addition to the prescription fee at the time of re-assessment. Prescription re-assessments can be booked under our free zone visit scheme.
OWNERSHIP OF RECORDS
All records, images (radiographs, ultrasound images, endoscopy images/videos) and tissue samples acquired during the course of clinical investigation and/or treatment shall remain the property of Newnham Court Equine. Even though we make a charge for carrying out these investigations and interpreting their results, ownership of the resulting records (e.g. radiographs) remains with the company. This accumulated information may be used for the purposes of clinical auditing, clinical research and veterinary education, including publications and presentations at professional or lay-person meetings. Information for such purposes will be completely anonymised such that no identifying data (client or animal name) will be apparent. Copies with a summary of the history will be passed on request to another veterinary surgeon taking over the case. We reserve the right to charge an administration fee for such copies as per RCVS Guidelines.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND DATA PROTECTION
Newnham Court Equine recognises that client confidentiality is of utmost importance. Save as required to perform the agreed services or as required by law, we will not pass any of your personal identifiable details to third parties without your permission (including permission given in these Terms and Conditions). We use any personal data we collect in accordance with our Privacy Notice. Further information regarding your rights with respect to your Personal Data can also be found in our Privacy Notice, which can either be found at https://www.newnhamcourtequine.co.uk/privacy-policy or is available on request.
We are registered under the Data Protection Act of 1998 to keep your personal information for accounting and record purposes. We will not divulge your details to other agencies except for debt collection purposes. We will use the data that we have on file to contact you with information beneficial to your animal’s health, for example vaccination reminders, drug recall information, relevant products/promotions, and newsletters. If you DO NOT want us to send you such information, please advise the Practice Manager in writing.
We reserve the right to charge a fee for appointments made and not attended. Any free zone visit that is not attended after the times have been texted to you will be charged a non-attendance fee of £25.
We are always pleased to receive feedback on the services that we provide, and this should be addressed to the clinician in charge of your animal.
Whilst we strive to provide animals with the best possible standard of care, we recognise that on occasion you may feel we don’t get it right. Often the cause of many problems is poor communication. If you have a grievance, please discuss this with the vet in charge of your case at the earliest opportunity. If you wish to make a complaint, please do so in writing, to our Practice Manager, Mrs. Laura Hawkins, firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have cause to dispute the fees on your invoice please send written notice to our Practice Manager, within 7 days of receiving your invoice.
You will ensure that we have at all times up to date contact details for you and will inform us of any change of ownership of an animal.
It will frequently be in the interests of animal welfare, continuity of care and treatment and of other considerations relevant to ensuring the best possible treatment and outcomes for animals under the care of Newnham Court Equine, that NCE is able to communicate not only with the owner of the animal but also with others either directly or indirectly involved in the care, management, custody or ownership of the animal in question or its insurance. You accordingly specifically authorise NCE to communicate with any and all such authorised third parties and to convey to them, as necessary, information which, but for this provision, might be regarded as confidential information as between NCE and you.
You also agree that we are permitted to liaise with others directly or indirectly involved in the care, management, custody, insurance of or ownership of the animal in question or its insurance with regards to payment or recovery of fees incurred in connection with the animal in question.
If you are acting as an authorised agent of an owner of an animal (including but not limited to an agent, custodian, referring practice, referral practice, insurance company or other third party), you represent, warrant and undertake that you are duly authorised by the owner to engage the services of NCE in relation to such animal, provide information and personal data about the owner to NCE and, to the extent that you lack relevant authority, you hereby undertake to indemnify and keep indemnified NCE from and against all consequences of any such want of authority and confirm that you are liable for NCE’s fees for providing the services you instructed us to provide.
If any person who is contractually the client of Newnham Court Equine under these conditions shall be liable to NCE for any amount due to NCE in respect of any animal treated under these Conditions, then any assertion by such contracting party that he/she is not the owner of the relevant animal shall not be a defence in respect of any claim brought against such person by NCE.
These terms and conditions do not affect your statutory rights.
CONSUMER CONTRACT REGULATIONS 2013
In the event that you are contracting with Newnham Court Equine as a consumer, and such contract is not made at the clinic, you have under the Consumer Contract Regulations 2013, a right to cancel instructions given to Newnham Court Equine by yourself within fourteen (14) days of receiving these Terms and Conditions, or being advised of these Terms and Conditions. If you would like us to commence work within the next 14 days, please ensure that you sign these terms and conditions or confirm your instruction in writing (email will suffice). If you wish to terminate your instructions to Newnham Court Equine within such 14 day period, then Newnham Court Equine will discontinue rendering services to you but you will be responsible for any services NCE have provided up to and including the date when NCE received your notice to terminate your instructions.