130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. B. No. 63  As Introduced
As Introduced

126th General Assembly
Regular Session
2005-2006
H. B. No. 63


Representatives Carano, Reidelbach, Ujvagi, Perry, Miller, Setzer, Brown, Barrett, Collier, S. Patton 



A BILL
To amend section 955.99 and to enact sections 955.501 and 955.502 of the Revised Code to require certain persons who sell dogs not older than fifteen months of age to provide remedies to a buyer of a dog that exhibits a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, dies from a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, or is discovered to be of a different registration status with a pedigree organization than the seller represented.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF OHIO:
Section 1.  That section 955.99 be amended and sections 955.501 and 955.502 of the Revised Code be enacted to read as follows:
Sec. 955.501. (A) As used in this section and in section 955.502 of the Revised Code:
(1) "Buyer" means a person who purchases a dog from a seller.
(2) "Congenital defect or common hereditary disorder" means a condition, such as hip dysplasia, deafness, blindness, thyroid or bleeding disorders, and patellar luxation grades three and four, that frequently manifests itself in certain sizes or breeds of dogs and adversely affects a dog's health or requires, or is likely to require, hospitalization or a surgical procedure to preserve or restore its health, prevent it from experiencing pain or discomfort, or correct a condition that interferes with its ability to walk, run, jump, or otherwise function in a normal manner.
(3) "Congenital" means existing at birth.
(4) "Hereditary" means genetically transmitted.
(5) "Seller" means a person who sells dogs to any of the following:
(a) The public;
(b) Pet stores;
(c) Kennel owners.
"Seller" does not include a humane society, a nonprofit organization that performs the functions of a humane society, or an animal control agency.
(6) "Veterinarian" means a person who is licensed in this state to practice veterinary medicine under Chapter 4741. of the Revised Code.
(B)(1) At the time of the sale of a dog, the seller shall provide the buyer with a detailed, dated receipt, bill of sale, or contract containing the buyer's name and home address or business address, if applicable, the seller's name and business address, the purchase price of the dog, disclosure of any congenital defect or common hereditary disorder in the dog or the lineage of the dog of which the seller is aware, a record containing the dates and types of inoculations and deworming treatments administered to the dog, the dog's name, breed, sex, color, coat length, date of birth, age, distinctive markings, if any, and microchip or tattoo identification number, if present, and the registration or eligibility of the dog for registration with a pedigree organization. The receipt, bill of sale, or contract may contain recommended care instructions for the dog.
(2) At the time of the transfer of physical possession of a dog from a seller to a buyer, the seller shall present for the buyer's signature a receipt signed by the seller and containing the date of transfer and an acknowledgement of the buyer's receipt of the information required by division (B)(1) of this section. The seller then shall provide the buyer with the signed original receipt or a copy of it. The receipt required by division (B)(2) of this section may be contained within the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required under division (B)(1) of this section.
(C)(1) In order to obtain a remedy under division (D) of this section, a buyer shall do whichever of the following applies:
(a) In the case of a dog that is not older than fifteen months of age and that is discovered to have a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, request a veterinarian chosen by the buyer to issue a statement in accordance with division (F) of this section certifying that the defect or disorder exists in the dog. The veterinarian shall send the statement to the buyer.
(b) In the case of a dog that is not older than fifteen months of age and that dies due to a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, request a veterinarian chosen by the buyer to issue a necropsy report and statement in accordance with division (F) of this section certifying that the dog died due to the defect or disorder. The veterinarian shall send the statement containing the report to the buyer.
(c) In the case of a buyer who, not later than twelve months after obtaining physical possession of a dog, discovers that the seller misrepresented the dog's registration or eligibility for registration with a pedigree organization, obtain a written statement from the pedigree organization containing the buyer's name and address, the organization's name and address, the date on which the statement was prepared, and the reason why the dog is not registered or is not eligible for registration with the organization.
(2) Not later than ten days after a veterinarian prepares the veterinarian's statement or thirty days after the pedigree organization prepares its statement, the buyer shall deliver it to the seller in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested.
(D) Not later than ten days after delivering a veterinarian's or pedigree organization's statement in accordance with division (C) of this section, a buyer may do one of the following as applicable:
(1) In the case of a dog with a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, do one of the following:
(a) Return the dog with the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall provide the buyer with a full refund of the purchase price of the dog less any sales tax.
(b) If the buyer wants to keep the dog, request reimbursement from the seller in an amount not to exceed the purchase price of the dog for veterinary fees for diagnosis and treatment of the defect. The buyer shall present to the seller the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall reimburse the buyer for the veterinary fees.
(c) If the buyer wishes to obtain a dog of the same pedigree and one is available from the seller, exchange the dog. The buyer shall present to the seller the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall exchange the dog with the congenital defect or common hereditary disorder for a healthy dog of the same pedigree if such a dog is available. The seller shall furnish the documents required by division (B) of this section for the new dog.
(2) In the case of a dog that died due to a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, do either of the following:
(a) Request the seller to provide a full refund of the purchase price of the dog less any sales tax. The buyer shall present to the seller the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall provide a full refund of the purchase price of the dog.
(b) If a healthy dog of the same pedigree is available, request the seller to provide such a dog. The buyer shall present to the seller the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall provide a healthy dog of the same pedigree if one is available. The seller shall furnish the documents required by division (B) of this section for the new dog.
(3) In the case of a seller who misrepresented a dog's registration or eligibility for registration with a pedigree organization, do either of the following:
(a) Return the dog with the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall provide the buyer with a full refund of the purchase price of the dog less any sales tax.
(b) If the buyer wants to keep the dog, request the seller to provide a refund in an amount equal to one-half of the dog's purchase price. The buyer shall present to the seller the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section. Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the seller shall provide a refund in an amount equal to one-half of the dog's purchase price.
(E)(1) In the case of a dog that has a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder or has died from a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, the seller shall not be required to accept the return of the dog, replace the dog with a healthy dog of the same pedigree if one is available, or provide the buyer with a refund or reimbursement for veterinary fees in any of the following situations:
(a) The seller informed the buyer, both orally and through a statement contained in the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section, that the congenital defect or common hereditary disorder existed in the dog at the time of sale.
(b) The defect, disorder, or death resulted from maltreatment, neglect, illness, or an injury that occurred after the buyer obtained physical possession of the dog.
(c) Following the seller's request that the buyer return to the seller copies of all documents provided, if any, for the purpose of registering the dog with a pedigree organization, the buyer fails to return the documents or provide the seller with a statement certifying that the documents have been inadvertently lost or destroyed.
(d) The buyer failed to carry out a treatment protocol, if any, that was recommended by the veterinarian who examined the dog and confirmed the defect or disorder, and veterinary fees plus the cost of the treatment, if it had been carried out, would be equal to or less than the dog's purchase price.
(e) If the receipt, bill of sale, or contract required by division (B) of this section included recommended care instructions for the dog, the buyer failed to carry out those instructions.
(2) In the case of a dog that has died from a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, the seller shall not be required to provide the buyer with a refund or a replacement dog if the seller provides the buyer with documentation certifying that available noninvasive genetic testing and certification of the dog's parentage were performed to detect the defect or disorder and failed to reveal its existence in the dog.
(F) A veterinarian's statement shall be in writing and contain all of the following:
(1) The buyer's name and home address or business address, if applicable;
(2) The veterinarian's name and office address;
(3) A statement that the veterinarian examined the dog;
(4) The date on which the veterinarian examined the dog;
(5) The dog's name, breed, sex, color, coat length, date of birth, age, distinctive markings, if any, and microchip or tattoo identification number, if present;
(6) The precise findings of the examination;
(7) In the case of a dog that dies, a necropsy report;
(8) The veterinarian's signature;
(9) The date on which the veterinarian prepared the statement.
In the case of a buyer who wants to keep the dog and receive reimbursement for veterinary fees, an itemized bill of the charges necessary for diagnosis and an estimate of the cost of any necessary treatment also shall be included in the veterinarian's statement.
Sec. 955.502. (A) At the time of the sale of a dog, a seller shall present for a buyer's signature and allow the buyer to keep written notice of the buyer's rights under section 955.501 of the Revised Code. The seller shall retain a copy of the notice signed by the buyer to acknowledge that the buyer reviewed it.
(B) The notice required by division (A) of this section shall be printed in type of the minimum size of ten points and contain the following statement:
"A STATEMENT OF OHIO LAW GOVERNING THE SALE OF DOGS
If you purchase a dog in Ohio from a seller who sells dogs to pet stores, kennel owners, or the public, other than a humane society, a nonprofit organization that performs the functions of a humane society, or an animal control agency, you have the following rights under sections 955.501 and 955.99 of the Revised Code:
DOG WITH A CONGENITAL DEFECT OR COMMON HEREDITARY DISORDER: REIMBURSEMENT FOR VETERINARY FEES, EXCHANGE, OR RETURN AND REFUND If you purchase a dog that is not older than fifteen months of age and a veterinarian who is licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Ohio states in writing that the dog has a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder that adversely affects the dog's health or that requires, or is likely to require in the future, hospitalization or nonelective surgical procedures, you have ten days after the veterinarian's statement is prepared in which you may give the statement to the seller in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested. Within ten days after delivering the veterinarian's statement, you may return the dog and receive a full refund of the dog's purchase price less any sales tax, return the dog and receive a healthy dog of the same pedigree if one is available, or, if you want to keep the dog, receive reimbursement in an amount up to the dog's purchase price for veterinary fees for diagnosing and treating the defect.
DOG THAT DIES: REFUND OR REPLACEMENT If you purchase a dog that is not older than fifteen months of age and it dies, and a veterinarian who is licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Ohio provides you with a necropsy report and states in writing that the death was due to a congenital defect or common hereditary disorder, you have ten days after the veterinarian's statement is prepared in which you may give the statement to the seller in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested. Within ten days after delivering the veterinarian's statement, you may either receive a full refund of the dog's purchase price less any sales tax or, if a healthy dog of the same pedigree is available, replace the dog with the healthy dog.
SELLER'S MISREPRESENTATION OF DOG'S REGISTRATION OR ELIGIBILITY FOR REGISTRATION WITH A PEDIGREE ORGANIZATION: RETURN OR REFUND If you purchase a dog from a seller who states that the dog is registered or eligible for registration with a pedigree organization and, within one year after you receive the dog, you discover that the statement is false, you may obtain a written statement from the pedigree organization that contains your name and home address or business address, if applicable, the organization's name and address, the date on which the statement was prepared, and the reason why the dog is not registered or is not eligible for registration with the organization. You have thirty days after the organization's statement is prepared in which you may give the statement to the seller in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested. Within ten days after delivering the organization's statement, you may either return the dog and receive a full refund of the dog's purchase price less any sales tax or keep the dog and receive a refund in an amount equal to one-half of the dog's purchase price.
On the sale of a dog, a seller is required to give you a detailed, dated receipt, bill of sale, or contract containing all of the following:
Your name and home address or business address, if applicable;
The seller's name and business address;
The price you paid for the dog;
Disclosure of any congenital defect or common hereditary disorder in the dog or the lineage of the dog of which the seller is aware;
A record containing the dates and types of inoculations and deworming treatments administered to the dog;
The dog's name, breed, sex, color, coat length, date of birth, age, distinctive markings, if any, and microchip or tattoo identification number, if present;
The registration or eligibility of the dog for registration with a pedigree organization.
On the day you obtain physical possession of the dog, the seller is required to present you with a receipt for your signature that contains the seller's signature and that day's date. This receipt may be contained within the receipt, bill of sale, or contract that the seller is required to give you at the time of the sale of the dog. If you received all of the information that the seller is required to give you as discussed above, you must sign the receipt to acknowledge that you received it. The seller then is required to give you the original receipt or a copy of it.
A veterinarian's statement is required to be in writing and contain all of the following information:
Your name and home address or business address, if applicable;
The veterinarian's name and office address;
A statement that the veterinarian examined the dog;
The date on which the veterinarian examined the dog;
The dog's name, breed, sex, color, coat length, date of birth, age, distinctive markings, if any, and microchip or tattoo identification number, if present;
The precise findings of the examination;
In the case of a dog that dies, a necropsy report;
The veterinarian's signature;
The date on which the veterinarian prepared the statement.
If you want to keep the dog and receive reimbursement for veterinary fees, an itemized bill of the charges necessary for diagnosis and an estimate of the cost of any necessary treatment also are required to be included in the veterinarian's statement.
I have read and understand the above information.
.................................................
Your (buyer's) signature
.................................................
date"
Sec. 955.99.  (A)(1) Whoever violates division (E) of section 955.11 of the Revised Code because of a failure to comply with division (B) of that section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.
(2) Whoever violates division (E) of section 955.11 of the Revised Code because of a failure to comply with division (C) or (D) of that section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor on a first offense and of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on each subsequent offense.
(B) Whoever violates section 955.10, 955.23, 955.24, or 955.25 or division (B) of section 955.501 of the Revised Code is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.
(C) Whoever violates section 955.261, 955.39, or 955.50 of the Revised Code is guilty of a minor misdemeanor on a first offense and of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on each subsequent offense.
(D) Whoever violates division (F) of section 955.16 or division (B) of section 955.43 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.
(E)(1) Whoever violates section 955.21 or division (B) or (C) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code shall be fined not less than twenty-five dollars or more than one hundred dollars on a first offense, and on each subsequent offense shall be fined not less than seventy-five dollars or more than two hundred fifty dollars and may be imprisoned for not more than thirty days.
(2) In addition to the penalties prescribed in division (E)(1) of this section, if the offender is guilty of a violation of division (B) or (C) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the dog that the offender owns, keeps, or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both.
(F) If a violation of division (D) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code involves a dangerous dog, whoever violates that division is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on a first offense and of a misdemeanor of the third degree on each subsequent offense. Additionally, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the dangerous dog that the offender owns, keeps, or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both, and the court may order the offender to obtain liability insurance pursuant to division (E) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code. The court, in the alternative, may order the dangerous dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the county dog warden, or the county humane society.
(G) If a violation of division (D) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code involves a vicious dog, whoever violates that division is guilty of one of the following:
(1) A felony of the fourth degree on a first or subsequent offense if the dog kills or seriously injures a person. Additionally, the court shall order that the vicious dog be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the county dog warden, or the county humane society.
(2) A misdemeanor of the first degree on a first offense and a felony of the fourth degree on each subsequent offense. Additionally, the court may order the vicious dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the county dog warden, or the county humane society.
(3) A misdemeanor of the first degree if the dog causes injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person.
(H) Whoever violates division (A)(2) of section 955.01 or division (E) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.
(I) Whoever violates division (C) of section 955.221 of the Revised Code is guilty of a minor misdemeanor. Each day of continued violation constitutes a separate offense. Fines levied and collected for violations of that division shall be distributed by the mayor or clerk of the municipal or county court in accordance with section 733.40, division (F) of section 1901.31, or division (C) of section 1907.20 of the Revised Code to the treasury of the county, township, or municipal corporation whose resolution or ordinance was violated.
(J) Whoever violates division (F)(1), (2), or (3) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code is guilty of a felony of the fourth degree. Additionally, the court shall order that the vicious dog be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the county dog warden, or the county humane society.
(K) Whoever violates division (A) of section 955.502 of the Revised Code shall be fined not less than two hundred fifty dollars nor more than five hundred dollars on a first offense; on each subsequent offense the person shall be fined not less than seven hundred fifty dollars nor more than one thousand dollars.
Section 2.  That existing section 955.99 of the Revised Code is hereby repealed.
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