Practice Terms & Conditions
Practice Terms & Conditions
Our commitment to you
We aim to provide you with a first-class service and the highest standards of treatment and care for your animals.
Our professional fees are determined by the time spent on a case and the drugs, resources, materials, and consumables used. All fees, consumables and drug charges are subject to VAT at the current rate. We are always happy to provide written estimates for any procedure should you require one, however please bear in mind that any estimate we give can only be approximate, as often an animal’s illness will not follow a predictable or standard course.
Our Payment Terms
Equine & Small Animal
- All new clients will be asked to pay in advance for treatment & services until we have established a good payment history with yourselves.
- We will request Equine clients pay in advance for certain services, such as vetting’s or large surgical procedures.
- Once a payment history has been established payment is due within 14 days of the date of the invoice (excluding those services & surgical procedures where payment is due in advance).
- Clients with outstanding/overdue charges will be asked to clear their account before any further treatment can be provided. If charges have been outstanding for some time, we may also request you pay for future treatment in advance.
- Clients who are persistently late in paying will also be required to pay all fees in advance or at the time of treatment and access to our veterinary services may be withdrawn.
- To offset the cost of late payment to us and to minimise the risk to our service levels, we will charge all clients a non-deductible administration charge of £15.00 on invoices that remain unpaid after 28 days from the date of the invoice.
- Equine only – If your horse is admitted to hospital you will be asked to pay a deposit towards treatment within 24 hours of their arrival. All hospital patients are asked to pay their remaining balance on collection unless other arrangements have been agreed with the Towcester Equine Partner in charge of the case.
- If an outstanding balance is not paid within 60 days of any treatment and no formal arrangement to discharge the debt has been agreed, we will refer the debt to our debt collection agency & withdraw our services. Further charges may be levied in respect of costs incurred in collecting the debt. We may also inform other local veterinary practices of the reasons for referral of the debt to the debt collection agency.
- All Towcester Farm Vet clients are automatically put on a thirty-day credit account. Bills are produced on a monthly basis and sent out by the 10th of the following month. We request that all bills are settled by the end of that month. If a bill is unpaid after two months, we then apply a 2% surcharge on any balance that is over 60 days old.
Payment Methods – making it easy for you
Our aim is to make payment as easy as possible for you. You may settle your account using:
- CHEQUE with current banker’s card
- CREDIT/DEBIT CARD in person or over the phone (Switch, Solo, Mastercard, Visa & Delta – we do not accept American Express)
- Online or by bank transfer
Sort Code: 30-18-83
Reference: please use your invoice number or account number
If you have more than one account with us i.e. farm, small animal and/or equine, then a single payment covering all bills is acceptable. We will provide you with a remittance slip for this purpose which needs to be filled in and sent back with the payment in order for us to allocate the correct amount to the appropriate accounts.
Returned Cheques and Payments
Any cheque which you issue which is returned unpaid or any credit/debit card payment which is not honoured, or any cash payment which is found to be counterfeit will result in your account being restored to the unpaid sum. As you would expect, additional charges may also be incurred in the process.
Inability to pay
If you are in aware in advance of treatment that you will be unable to settle your account within our payment terms, please appraise the vet at the time of treatment.
If you find yourself in the unfortunate position of being unable to pay your account following treatment, please immediately contact our Client Account Manager (contact details below) to discuss the situation.
Whilst we hope our service does not give you cause for complaint, if you do wish to complain please make contact with one of the partners and our Client Account Manager in the following way:
Towcester Veterinary Centre
Telephone: 01327 811007
We are always pleased to receive feedback on the service we provide. Please forward this to the Client Account Manager using the above contact details.
Any dispute with the fees/service presented must be put in writing to our Client Account Manager (using the above contact details) within 14 days of receiving the invoice.
Where any dispute is not proven and as a result the payment is late, the overdue accounts procedure will become effective. Therefore, clients are always advised to settle their invoice on time, and if there is a dispute this payment is made without prejudice.
Health Insurance and Liabilities
Liabilities: Towcester Veterinary Centre accepts no responsibility for accidents or incidents that occur whilst any equine is under our care. It is the owner’s responsibility to provide your own insurance cover.
Towcester Veterinary Centre strongly supports the principle of insuring against expected illness or accident. The role of the insurance company is to reimburse you for fees incurred for veterinary treatment. Even when insured, your veterinary charges and fees must be paid by you initially and are due for payment as per the above terms. Please then claim the fees from your insurance company.
Under very specific circumstances we can arrange for Insurance Companies to make payment directly to us. This arrangement must be agreed with us before or at the time of treatment and with your insurance company. We will request that you make a payment to cover your insurance excess at the time or prior to required treatment. We cannot guarantee that your insurance company will cover the costs of treatment and you are therefore encouraged to contact the insurance company to verify cover before any treatment has been administered. Many policies insist on this and failing to do so will invalidate your policy.
Livery Yards/Training Stables (Equine)
Please ensure that you have made a suitable agreement with the livery/training yard owner that gives them permission to call the Vet on your behalf and authorise treatment for your horse. Our Policy for horses on livery/training yards, is to invoice the animal’s owner directly.
Where livery yard/stables do arrange a veterinary service or purchases of goods from us, it is assumed that permission has been given by you for this service or goods to be provided. If this is the case, you will be invoiced and responsible for prompt settlement of that account.
If you have a written agreement with the yard/training stable, that invoices will be initially settled by the yard/training stables, then that livery yard/training stables is responsible for ensuring accounts are settled on time. They also become liable for any late payment action. Their terms and conditions for this service is between you and them and not the responsibility of Towcester Equine.
All horses, ponies, donkeys and mules must have passports which should be available to our vets to check. We strongly recommend that passports are signed by you the owner to confirm that the horse is not for human consumption. If a passport is not available, a detailed record of your equine’s medicinal products must be retained.
Surgical referrals (Small Animal)
In the case of surgical referrals, we will provide a high-quality service with excellent and prompt communication at all times. We will send the referring vet a letter on the day your client’s pet is discharged along with a copy of the discharge summary given to the client. We will only treat your client’s pet for the condition it has been referred to us for. Your client will not be eligible to register any pet with us for a period of 12 months after the initial referral.
Ownership of your Records
Although we are treating your animal, all case records, x-rays, scans and similar documents are the property of, and will be retained by Towcester Veterinary Centre. Whilst you are free at any time to see these records and even though a charge may be made for the investigations and interpreting the results, ownership of the resulting record e.g. an x-ray or ultrasound scan remains the property of the practice. Upon request, copies of records with a summary of the history of your animal will be passed to another Veterinary Surgeon taking over your animal’s care and treatment.
Termination of services
You may ask us to stop caring for your animal/s at any time.
We may withdraw our services if:
- you fail to settle your account on time
- the relationship between you and the practice breaks down
- we are prohibited by law from doing any further work on your case
Under these circumstances, we will provide you with notice in writing to seek alternative veterinary care.
Variation in Terms and Conditions of Business
No addition or variation of these conditions will bind the practice unless specifically agreed in writing by a Towcester Veterinary Centre Partner. Additionally, no agent or person employed by or under contract with the Practice has the authority to alter or vary these terms and conditions in anyway.
Our guarantee to you: we will only use client details for the purpose of our business. We will not intentionally pass, without your permission, any details on to 3rd parties, unless specifically detailed above. We will aim to accurately maintain your contact preference details on our databases.
Your responsibility: you will provide us with correct and updated personal information to allow us to provide our services to you in a timely and efficient manner. All of our telephone calls are recorded for our own reference, and none of your personal details will be passed on without your permission.