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AQHA Cloning Lawsuit Resources

Abraham & Veneklasen Joint Venture
American Quarter Horse Association

Latest Updates

  • FEBRUARY 26, 2015: The Plaitiffs filed a petition for all active judges of the Fifth Circuit to rehear the case that was decided originally by the three-judge panel of Judges Jolly, Jones and Africk. Read the news release.
  • JANUARY 14, 2015: The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit rules in favor of AQHA. Read the news release.
  • JUNE 20, 2014: Preliminary indication from the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is that oral arguments will be the week of September 1. Read the news release.
  • MARCH 24, 2014: AQHA filed its Reply Brief to Plaintiffs’ Brief in the cloning lawsuit with the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Click here for a link to the Reply Brief.
  • MARCH 3, 2014: On February 27, 2014, Appellees (Plaintiffs) filed their response brief. AQHA's current deadline to reply is March 24.
  • JANUARY 10, 2014: On January 2, 2014, several groups filed an Amici Curiae Brief asking the Fifth Circuit to reverse the district court’s judgment and render a verdict in favor of AQHA. Read the news release, including the list of breed organizations supporting AQHA's effort to have the final judgement reversed.
  • JANUARY 3, 2014: On December 26, 2013, AQHA filed its appellate brief in the cloning lawsuit. Read the news release.
  • DECEMBER 3, 2013: The U.S. District Court in Amarillo granted in part AQHA's Motion for Stay of Equitable Relief Pending Appeal. The effect of the order is that pending resolution of AQHA’s appeal, AQHA is not required to register clones or their offspring. Read the news release.
  • SEPTEMBER 23, 2013: AQHA filed its Notice of Appeal, which will begin the appellate process as the case heads to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans.
  • AUGUST 22, 2013: The judge in the cloning lawsuit issued a final judgment ordering AQHA to immediately begin registering clones and their offspring. Read the news release.
  • AUGUST 12, 2013: Parties appear before the Court to argue the plantiffs' claims for attorney fees and for equitable relief in the form of an injunction requiring AQHA to register clones and their offspring. Read the news release.
  • AUGUST 1, 2013: AQHA announces its intentions to appeal the verdict. Read the news release.
  • JULY 30, 2013: The Federal Jury ruled against the American Quarter Horse Association in the cloning lawsuit. Read the news release.
  • JULY 15, 2013: Parties will appear before the court on Tuesday, July 16 for a pretrial conference. Jury selection is scheduled for Wednesday, July 17.
  • JULY 8, 2013: Parties attended the docket call this morning in federal court and announced they are ready for trial. The Court has set July 16 as the trial date. It is anticipated the trial will take two to three weeks.

Lawsuit Background


In April 2012, Jason Abraham and two of his related companies, Abraham & Veneklasen Joint Venture and Abraham Equine Inc., filed a lawsuit against the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas in Amarillo, seeking to force AQHA to repeal Rule 227(a) (now Rule REG106.1) to allow cloned horses and their offspring to be eligible for registration with AQHA. These plaintiffs also sought money damages from AQHA.

Since the lawsuit was filed in April 2012, the parties exchanged thousands of pages of documents during the discovery process. More than 20 depositions were taken, including those of the plaintiffs and their experts, as well as depositions of AQHA executive committee members, stud book and registration committee members, AQHA staff and AQHA experts.

At trial, AQHA and its legal team defended the right of the AQHA board of directors, acting on behalf of the membership, to decide whether horses produced by cloning ought to be eligible for registration.

This site is used to update members of media and AQHA members as information warrants and is available.


For background information, please use one of the resources listed below or direct your specific questions to one of the individuals below:

Contact AQHA:

Sarah Davisson
806-378-4368 (office)