TRANSPARENCY & UNDERSTANDING
11/6/22 Statement – AHA filed a "Motion For Summary Judgement" on September 6, 2022, which was followed by the PAT's "Plaintiff's Response In Response To AHA's Motion For Summary Judgement" on October 11, 2022. AHA then filed a "Reply In Support of Defendant's Motion For Summary Judgement" on October 25, 2022.
The contents of these Filings were considered by the Court and AHA's Motion was DENIED in a RULING issued October 28, 2022.
A Trial Management Order was jointly submitted and the Court SO ORDERED October 31, 2022.
These publicly filed documents have been added to the PAT Website and can be found below.
A 5-day trial to the Court is set to commence on December 5, 2022, in District Court, Arapahoe County, Colorado.
PLAINTIFF'S RESPONSE IN OPPOSITION TO AHA'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGEMENT
REPLY IN FAVOR OF DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGEMENT
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGEMENT (document does not show an apostrophe after Defendant ('s).
10/01/22 Statement – The Purebred Arabian Trust (PAT) provides this statement to respond to inaccuracies and incomplete information presented in recent public statements made by AHA. In its September 1, 2022 "Member Update," sent to at least 15,500 members, AHA claims that the Trust is "leveraging" royalties it receives from purebred Arabian horse registrations in a lawsuit that is in direct opposition to AHA's members' interests. AHA also stated in a FAQ that the Trust brought this suit based on "network interruptions" in AHA's information technology environment.
The PAT has used its funds, including much of the royalties it has collected over the years, to promote the purebred Arabian horse, including, but not limited to, construction and maintaining the Al-Marah Arabian Horse Galleries wing of the Kentucky Horse Park's International Museum of the Horse, donating to the Arabian Horseman's Distress Fund (AHDF) to help with horses displaced as a result of the California wildfires in 2018, and various other projects brought to the Purebred Arabian Trust for funding from the Market Development and Promotion Committee and others. The PAT has devoted over $12 million to promoting the Arabian horse over the years.
While it is true that the outages of AHA's computer systems from February through April 2021, which prohibited it from issuing purebred horse registration and racing certificates for several weeks, was the final straw that forced the PAT to seek termination of its license agreement with AHA, that unfortunate event was merely the latest manifestation of the ongoing decline in registration services provided by AHA. The PAT and AHA’s own Registration Commission have tried to work with AHA for many years to improve its horse registration system and thus improve its registration services provided to purebred Arabian horse owners, including, but not limited to, electronic stallion data collection and reporting, electronic registration initiation and electronic transfers of ownership, and customer-facing data collection. In addition to the multi-week disruption in registrations, the PAT maintains that AHA has also breached the license agreement by failing to make needed updates to the registration system to make it a commercially functional business application, and also failed to adhere to good cybersecurity practices to adequately safeguard and protect the integrity of the registration system.
AHA also indicates that it has "no sense for the knowledge and/or expertise [the PAT has] in running a registry." The PAT was formed in 2002 for the central purpose of protecting and assuring the integrity of and ongoing timely and efficient registration services for purebred Arabian horses. The PAT's leadership comes directly from the predecessor Arabian Horse Registry of America (AHRA), which performed the purebred Arabian registration function for nearly 100 years prior to formation of AHA in 2003. As such, the PAT takes its responsibility seriously and will devote the necessary resources to not only resume registration services but to make the numerous improvements to the registration process that it and AHA’s Registration Commission have sought over the past ten years. As it was with the AHRA for decades before, purebred Arabian horse registrations and data integrity will be the overriding priority of the PAT.
08/05/21 Statement – The Purebred Arabian Trust (PAT) is a nonprofit formed in 2002 for the central purpose of protecting and assuring the ongoing and timely registration of purebred Arabian horses. Based on this purpose, the PAT retained ownership of the technology and database used in performing purebred registration functions when it licensed the use of that technology in 2003 to the newly-formed Arabian Horse Association (AHA) to perform the registration services through a License and Security Agreement (LSA).
Several years later, a dispute arose regarding ownership of the updated technology that AHA used to perform registration services beginning in 2011. Litigation of that dispute resulted in the Court ordering that AHA could maintain ownership and use of its HRS (Horse Registration System) to perform registration services, but that it must develop and provide a fully functioning registration system that the PAT would own and be able to use to immediately perform purebred registration services if AHA was ever unable or unwilling to reliably continue doing so (see PDFs to these rulings here and here). The purpose of both the LSA and Court Orders were to provide for continuous and reliable registration services for purebred Arabian horse owners.
After the Court Orders, AHA decided to develop the Purebred Arabian Registry System (PARS) to be owned and used by the PAT to perform registration services, if ever needed. Pursuant to the purpose and direction from the LSA and Court Orders, AHA and the PAT agreed to the Amendment 1 to the LSA in June 2020 after several months of discussion and negotiations. The Amended LSA set out the rules for how the PARS would be kept up-to-date and ready for the PAT to immediately resume registration services, if needed. The Amended LSA also set out when and how such “insourcing” of registration services to the PAT would be triggered and seamlessly performed.
As a result of two recent ransomware attacks, AHA was unable to perform purebred registration services for a nine-day period in February and a 30-day period during March and April of 2021—and remains unable to perform certain registration processes. This situation has led the PAT to believe that PARS is not able to fulfill its purpose of performing registration services when AHA is unable to do so. After further investigation, the PAT also believes that there are additional breaches of the Amended LSA. All of these items make up the “Insourcing Event” described in the PAT’s May 14, 2021 notice to AHA. AHA has responded to this notice by disputing that an insourcing event has occurred and has refused to begin the transition of registration services to the PAT.
After unsuccessfully engaging to resolve the issue from May through June (see correspondence letters below), given AHA’s continued positions on whether an insourcing event has occurred and a prompt transfer of registration services, the PAT has filed a new lawsuit in the Arapahoe County District Court in Colorado for breach of the Amended LSA. That Complaint sets forth the basis for the PAT’s allegations that AHA has breached the Amended LSA. We hope that these documents and this description provide some context for this litigation.
The PAT’s Board of Trustees is, of course, disappointed in this new reality. But we also remain committed to our mission of protecting and preserving the purebred Arabian horse... in order to continue the work of those before us, as well as for the generations who will enjoy this incomparable breed long after we are gone.
Below, you'll find a complete list of legal documents and full threads of communication to ensure full transparency and to equip those vested in the Arabian horse with a better understanding of the events that have transpired. We will continue to post updates on this page as they occur as well.