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Courier ordered to pay damages after stallion sperm shipment loses its potency

The adjudicator ruled at small claims court of Nova Scotia earlier this month that FedEx should pay the claimant $740.36 because claimant Chelsea McKendrick had understood "Priority overnight" delivery meant the sperm would arrive within 24 hours after it was sent.
The adjudicator ruled at small claims court of Nova Scotia earlier this month that FedEx should pay the claimant $740.36 because claimant Chelsea McKendrick had understood "Priority overnight" delivery meant the sperm would arrive within 24 hours after it was sent. File/ AP Photo

A multinational courier has been ordered to pay damages for taking two days to deliver stallion sperm after a Halifax adjudicator found customers were justified in expecting overnight service.

Augustus Richardson ruled in the small claims court of Nova Scotia earlier this month that FedEx should pay the claimant $740.36 because claimant Chelsea McKendrick had understood “Priority overnight” delivery meant the sperm would arrive within 24 hours after it was sent.

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In his Sept. 14 ruling, Richardson said the company hadn’t limited its liability last year by publishing advice “in small print” on its website that the delivery may take two days.

The adjudicator said the operator of Owls Ridge Farm in Seaforth, N.S., had ordered the semen from a farm in Langley, B.C., and there was a limited time period that the sperm would be effective.

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McKendrick told the Halifax court she had given the mare injections of hormones to trigger ovulation and had incurred vet fees with the expectation that the sperm would arrive on time.

She tried to use the stallion sperm after it arrived on May 4, 2016, rather than the day before, but the ruling says “the sperm had lost its potency” and the mare didn’t become pregnant.