My wife and I signed a contract to adopt a dog from a rescue. We did not fully read the contract which was poor judgement. The contract stated that we return the dog if we can no longer keep it. Also, the contract said there was a $500 donation required for adoption, which was waived in lieu of us covering his medical bills.
The dog was soiling the carpets and was rehomed, and later sold by that person. The rescue contacted us and we told them the dog was rehomed, then they needed to find out where the dog was. Understandably, they were angered, so I had the new owner contact the rescue. They decided the dog was in a good home and did not charge a donation. The rescue representative and I agreed that to make it right, I donated 500. It was returned and they said it was up to the board to discuss
The organization is taking me to small claims court for breach of contract. They want a 500 donation and other costs including lawyer fees. I feel like there is something going on behind the scenes, a board member is the one filing and got an out of state lawyer to "provide services", they are also close friends.
They refused when I offered to get the dog back to meet the contract.
I cannot speak for MD law. However, The agreement, as you state it, requires a return if you cannot keep it. sounds like a new adoption, and a fee required for same, but not from you.
They seem to be claiming that the $500 donation should not have been returned, and that you owe that money to them. As for attorney fees, those are usually not recoverable unless stated in a contract.
You need to contact a reputable, Animal Lawyer, or one that handles contract cases.
Michael Rotsten, Esq.
Questions regarding Animal issues are always "iffy", and depend upon very specific factual scenarios. My answers are generalities, based upon my reading of your question, and must not be taken as an absolute for your particular reason for asking the question. My answers are only based upon California law, and are not to be used for other State issues. Michael Rotsten, Esq.
I would argue that a donation is optional. If it is mandatory, it should be called a fee.
I am an Attorney-at-Law, licensed to practice law only in the state of California. Unless we have both signed a formal retainer agreement, you are not my client, and my discussion of issues does not constitute legal advice. Opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of those who hold other opinions.
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