Respected National Highly-rated equine law leader
Julie I. Fershtman, Attorney at Law
A National Leader in Equine Law



Author of Books

No other lawyer has produced more educational material to benefit the equine industry.  

Equine Law & Horse Sense 

MORE Equine Law & Horse Sense.  These books have been required reading material at equine studies programs around the country.

Litigating Animal Law Disputes: A Complete Guide for Lawyers  (co-author and co-editor). Julie authored chapters addressing contracts, insurance, and tort law.

Recently approved to write the American Bar Association's new Equine Law book! 

For more information on her books, including how to order, please visit 

Peer Recognition

Fellow of the American College of Equine Attorneys.  One of less than 20 attorneys nationwide to earn the prestigious Fellow designation. 

Equine Industry Honors

Recipient of these prestigious equine industry awards from respected equine organizations:

Boards and Organizations (Partial List)

  • Equine Land Conservation Resource (Advisory Committee)
  • Founder of “Equitana U,” one of the equine industry's first ever business & professional development workshops for professionals
  • Planning Committee, National Conference on Equine Law
  • Past Honorary Director, Communication Alliance to Network Thoroughbred Ex-Racehorses (CANTER)
  • Past Vice Chair, ABA Tort, Trial & Insurance Law Section Animal Law Committee
  • Past Chair, Animal Insurance Law subcommittee, ABA-TIPS Animal Law Committee


Author of articles on Equine Law covering a broad spectrum of issues affecting the industry.  Articles have appeared in more than 400 publications, including EQUUS, and numerous websites.

Examples of Past Speaking Engagements (Partial List)

Julie's speaking engagements span 29 states and include: 

  • National Conference on Equine Law - speaker by invitation nearly every year since 1994 
  • Equine Affaire Convention for years (Ohio, Massachusetts, and  California locations) 
  • American Horse Council Annual Convention
  • American Youth Horse Council Annual Convention
  • U.S. Dressage Federation Annual Meeting
  • Two-Day Intensive Risk Management Seminars and Equine Contract Workshops at Virginia Intermont College (2001, 2005, 2009, 2013)
  • Savannah College of Art & Design Two-Day Intensive Risk Management Seminar 
  • The University of Findlay
  • American Morgan Horse Assoc. Annual Conv. 
  • Hoosier Horse Fair 
  • National Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration
  • All-American Quarter Horse Congress
  • American Riding Instructors Assoc. Ann. Conv.
  • Equine Nutrition & Physiology Nat'l. Symposium
  • Midwest Horse Fair
  • Michigan Hunter/Jumper Association
  • Cornell University "Horses 2001" Conference
  • U.S. Pony Clubs Annual Convention
  • Carriage Association of America
  • Midwest Dressage Association
  • Equestrian Professional National Teleconferences
  • Equine Land Conservation Resource Teleconference
  • International Paso Fino Horse Assoc. Conv.
  • United Professional Horsemen's Assoc. Nat'l. Conv.
  • North American Riding for the Handicapped (now PATH International) Association Annual Conv.
  • American Paint Horse Association Annual Conv.
  • Carriage Operators of North America Convention
  • Michigan Horse Council Int'l. Stallion Expo
  • North American Horse Spectacular
  • North American Horsemen's Association Conf.
  • Northern Illinois Horse Fest
  • Schoolcraft College Equine Educational Series
  • Michigan Quarter Horse Association
  • Michigan Horse Drawn Vehicle Association
  • Highland Equestrian Conservancy
  • Equine Spectacular Convention (Arizona)
  • Michigan 4-H Leaders Conference
  • National Dude Ranchers Association Annual Conv.
  • California Dressage Society Convention


No other lawyer has had more speaking engagements on Equine Law. Please contact Julie directly to inquire about her availability, rates, topics, and requirements. 

Recent Speaking Engagements

2013   Agribusiness Conferences (California and Iowa); Washington State Bar Association (Washington); Wayne State Law School (Michigan); Michigan State University College of Law (Michigan); National Conference on Equine Law (Kentucky); National Business Institute (NBI) Nationwide Continuing Legal Education Webinar; New York State Bar Association (New York); Virginia Intermont College (Virginia); Savannah College of Art and Design (Georgia).

2014  MSU/My Horse University Webcast on Sales Fraud, Emmett J. Vaughan Agribusiness Conference (California); National Conference on Equine Law (Kentucky); Midwest Dressage Association (Michigan); ABA national webcast on Equine Contracts.

2015  National Conference on Equine Law (Lexington, KY); Agribusiness Conference (Kansas City, KS); Agribusiness Conferences (Sacramento, CA; Des Moines, IA; Indianapolis, IN; Richmond, VA); Agribusiness Agent Conference (Kansas City, KS); State Bar of Michigan Animal Law Section (Novi, MI); Equestrian Professional National Webinar.

2016  National Conference on Equine Law (Lexington, KY).

Please check back for updates on future speaking engagements around the country. 



Julie I. Fershtman is a Shareholder with the full-service law firm Foster Swift Collins & Smith, PC.  She is widely recognized as one of the nation's best known and most experienced Equine Law practitioners.

The practice.  Crossing all horse breeds and disciplines, she serves a national clientele of stables, professionals, associations, businesses, show management, insurers, trainers, international clinicians, riding instructors, breeders, exhibitors, and individual horse owners.

Expertise.  She offers unmatched national trial, appellate, and arbitration experience on equine matters and has achieved numerous courtroom victories. In one year, for example, she won jury trials in 3 states, 2 appeals, and a major Federal insurance case — all on equine matters. 

Background.  A practitioner for 29 years, Julie Fershtman graduated from Emory College and Emory Law School.  She is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and has been admitted to practice in 14 jurisdictions as special (pro hac vice) counsel on equine cases. She has drafted several hundred equine industry contracts. 

Legal consultant.  If you already have a lawyer in your state, she can be hired as a legal consultant to assist your lawyer on certain legal matters. 

Websites, Blog, and Facebook Page

Personal website 

Firm website   

Please visit and like our Facebook Page

Equine Law Blog: 


Our newest web domain:  

Services **

   Matters Handled

Examples of services provided:

  • Handling breach of contract, fraud/ misrepresentation, commercial code, and other claims involving equine-related transactions such as purchases/sales, leases, and partnerships.
  • Litigating disputes in the courts or through alternative dispute resolution (arbitration, mediation, facilitation).
  • Defending equine/farm/equestrian professionals,  businesses, and associations in personal injury claims and lawsuits.
  • Drafting and negotiating contracts for boarding, training, sales, waivers/releases, leases, and numerous other equine-related transactions.
  • Representing and advising insurance companies on  coverage and policy language as well as litrigation;
  • Advising equine industry clubs and associations regarding management, rules, bylaws, disputes, and regulations.
  • Representing some of the equine industry's top trainers, competitors, stables, and associations.
  • Counseling industry professionals, stable managers, and individual horse owners. 

National Experience

Litigation experience in several jurisdictions nationwide as co-counsel including Florida, Illinois (3 cases), Missouri, Ohio (3 cases), Georgia, Arizona, Kentucky (2 cases), Connecticut (2 cases), South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. Trial counsel before juries in Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, and Connecticut.

Legal Profession Honors & Awards

  Partial listing: 

  • The Best Lawyers in America,® 2013-2016 (Commercial Litigation, Insurance Law)
  • "Leader in the Law" by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in 2010.
  • "Top 50 Woman Lawyer in Michigan" by Super Lawyers 2013, 2014, 2015.
  • "Top 25 Woman Business Lawyer in Michigan" by Super Lawyers 2013, 2014, 2015.
  • Peer selected as a "Leading Lawyer." 
  • "Women to Watch" by Crain's Detroit Business.
  • "Top Lawyer" by DBusiness Magazine 2009, 2010, 2015, 2016.
  • Rated “AV” (highest possible rating for abilities and ethics) by Martindale, 
  • Who's Who in American Law for decades.
  • Highest rating (10.0/10 "Superb") by

Equine Industry Recognition

Recipient of numerous awards from prominent equine organizations for service to the equine industry (see list on left side of this page).

ANNOUNCEMENTS:  Julie's Equine Law speaking engagements in 2015 cover eight states — Kansas (2 speeches), California, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa, and a national webinar. 2016 speaking engagement already lined up at the National Conference on Equine Law.

Bar Leadership

  State - Past President (2011-2012) of the 44,000-member State Bar of Michigan.

  National - Past Vice-Chair (2005-2014), ABA Animal Law Committee

Results Delivered Year After Year

No lawyer can guarantee results, but we consistently strive to achieve them for our clients. Some recent examples:

- In 2015, Julie won a nine-day trial involving an equine sale dispute, representing the plaintiff.

- In 2014, defending equine industry clients against lawsuits involving serious personal injuries, Julie secured summary judgment (dismissal) court rulings on two different cases, just a few months apart. 

- Julie drafted a boarding stable's contract, but a customer later sued the stable. On the strength of the contract, both the trial court and court of appeals ruled in favor of the stable and upheld dismissal of the lawsuit (2014).

- Julie's equine industry client was sued for defamation (slander/libel), but in 2014 the court granted her motion to dismiss these claims. 

   ** Should You Hire Ms. Fershtman?

Sometimes equine-related legal matters call for experienced lawyers who combine knowledge of the industry with significant experience in handling business disputes, insurance law, contracts, and complex commercial matters. Julie Fershtman has that background and results to prove it. She deeply understands the equine industry and serves it honorably. She works tirelessly and aggressively on her clients' behalf. Also, when matters occasionally call for other areas of practice, she can direct people to qualified partners and associates at Foster Swift or at other law firms, whenever possible.

 Visit the Firm Web Site


Julie I. Fershtman, Esq.
Foster, Swift, Collins & Smith, PC
32300 Northwestern Highway,
Suite 230
Farmington Hills, Michigan 48334

Direct Phone Line: (248) 785-4731

Main Office Line: (248) 539-9900


Always take great care when choosing a lawyer for your legal matter. 

 We're busy, but we always consider new clients. If you have a serious legal matter and want to hire Ms. Fershtman, please remember that we must adhere to ethical standards and regulations.  Please do not e-mail, fax, mail, or send us details of your potential legal matter. (We might already represent the other side.) Instead, please call Ms. Fershtman's office [Direct line: (248) 785-4731 - Main law firm line: (248) 539-9900] so that we can check for potential conflicts and determine whether Julie Fershtman can assist you in some way on your matter. 

What state(s) does your matter involve? 

Julie Fershtman has handled matters across the country, but ethical restrictions prevent her from working alone on out-of-state legal matters and disputes. Because of this, hiring her on out-of-state matters will require you to hire a local lawyer to work in some capacity with her, with very few exceptions.




Julie Fershtman's Equine Law & Horse Sense book series, which began in 1996, is now sold out.  Watch for the release of Julie's newest Equine Law book, which is expected to be published in 2017 by the American Bar Association. 

Lawyers and Paralegals:  Julie's co-authored book entitled Litigating Animal Law Disputes: A Complete Guide for Lawyers is available for purchase. Published in 2009 by the ABA, it includes sample court filings, letters, and agreements as well as detailed explanations of the law, with numerous statutory and case citations that people working in the legal profession will find helpful.