Terms & Conditions

The Ralph aims to provide the highest standards of veterinary care. These are the terms on which we, The Ralph Veterinary Referral Centre PLC, supply veterinary services and related products to you. These Terms and Conditions shall apply to all supplies of Veterinary Services and Products by us to you to the exclusion of all other terms and conditions. Please note that some aspects of these Terms may not be relevant to you and we suggest you ask for further clarification from us if required.

1. Supply of Veterinary Services

1.1 We shall ensure that all Veterinary Services are supplied by suitably qualified staff, taking into account the nature of the Veterinary Service to be supplied in each instance.

1.2 Wherever practicable and on your request, a treatment plan for the supply of Veterinary Services will normally be agreed with you following an initial consultation and in advance of any further treatment. This treatment plan will provide an estimate regarding the likely costs of the course of treatment in such plan. In an emergency we reserve the right to provide such Veterinary Services as are reasonably necessary, in the professional judgement of the veterinary surgeon providing the Veterinary Services or other Ralph staff, without first agreeing a treatment plan.

1.3 Please note that any estimate given can only be an approximation of the costs of any treatment required. If our original estimate looks as if it will be exceeded, then the Veterinary Surgeon responsible for providing the Veterinary Services will discuss any increased fees with you before any further procedures are undertaken (save in the event of an emergency and at the professional discretion of the relevant Veterinary Surgeon acting in the best interest of your pet).

1.4 We will endeavour to provide Veterinary Services in accordance with reasonable standards denoted by The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) guidelines for Practice Standards and the Code of Professional Conduct of Veterinary Surgeons and Veterinary N All Veterinary Services shall be supplied in accordance with normal professional standards.

1.5 The Ralph is a 24 – 7 – 365 Referral Veterinary Services provider. We are also happy to act as an emergency primary care Out Of Hours provider for subscribing practices.

1.6 We reserve the right to decline to supply Veterinary Services at our discretion. You are free at all times at your cost and subject to the payment obligations in these terms and conditions, to seek a second opinion on or concerning any Veterinary Services provided.

2. Supply of Products

2.1 In the event of any defect or failure in any Product our liability to you shall be restricted to replacing the Product or refunding the price paid by you for the Product.

2.2 You acknowledge and agree that all Products must only be used in accordance with the instructions supplied with them or issued orally by the Veterinary Surgeon providing the Veterinary Services or other of our staff. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the use of any Product, you should consult the Veterinary Surgeon providing the Veterinary Services or other of our staff for clarification.

2.3 Any Products supplied by us shall be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose expressly agreed by the Veterinary Surgeon providing the Veterinary Services or other of our staff and shall comply with any description given. All other warranties, expressed or implied, are hereby excluded.

3. Payment

3.1 All Veterinary Services and Products provided by us shall be charged to you in accordance with our then current price list, a copy of which is available on request and which is subject to change without notice. If you have any question as regards the level of charge that will be incurred you should consult the Veterinary Surgeon in charge of your pet’s treatment or his staff for clarification.

3.2 Our normal practice is for payment to be made as follows

       a) Consultation only, full payment at the end of the consultation.

       b) If admitted, payment of 50% of the lower end of the provided estimate at the end of the consultation. The                 remainder to be settled at the time of discharge.

       c) Products will be provided either at the end of the consultation or at the time of discharge.

3.3 As a general rule we are happy to accept direct insurance claims. A direct insurance claim is one where you do not pay us; rather we claim the money directly from the insurance company. We may charge a direct insurance claim administration fee. In the event that all or any part of the insurance claim is not paid by your insurance company for any reason you will be liable for the outstanding balance.

3.4 We may refer overdue accounts to our debt collection agency.

3.5 In the event that any invoice or other sum owed by you is not paid when due then, without prejudice to any other remedies available to us, we may at any time:

3.5.1 add additional charge(s) to your outstanding account in order to recover fees and costs in connection                     with the collection of the sum owed (including but not limited to administrative costs and debt collection                       agency fees); and

3.5.2 issue notice to you that no further Veterinary Services and/or Products will be supplied to you.

3.6 All prices quoted are quoted inclusive of value added tax or other indirect taxes, duties or levies which shall be added as appropriate.

3.7 If you are unable to pay for the Veterinary Services we are only obliged to fulfil our minimum legal responsibilities and professional obligations in respect of your pet.

4. Liability

4.1 We carry professional indemnity insurance in the sum of £2m for any single claim. We supply Veterinary Services and Products to you on the condition that our liability for any loss, claim, cost or expense arising out said supply shall not exceed and shall be limited to a maximum of the Insured Sum.

4.2 If you wish us to assume a level of liability greater than the Insured Sum then we shall so agree on condition that:

4.2.1. you so request in writing; and

4.2.2 we are able to obtain insurance cover for said higher level of liability; and

4.2.3 you pay in advance to us the additional premium incurred by us in respect of the additional cover.

4.3  Nothing in these terms and conditions shall:

4.3.1 exclude or limit our liability for death or personal injury caused to a human being;

4.3.2 render us liable for any indirect or consequential loss (including, but not restricted to, loss of profit or                   loss of savings) which liability shall be excluded to the maximum extent permitted by law.

5.  Complaints

5.1 It is our intention that all our clients should be satisfied with the Veterinary Services and any Products supplied. In the event that you are dissatisfied with any aspect of the Veterinary Services or Products supplied by us, in the first instance you should contact the Hospital Director to discuss your concerns and they shall endeavour to address any issues arising.

5.2 If you remain dissatisfied, then please refer to our complaints policy, we can provide you with further details at the practice or on our website.

5.3 In the case of a complaint, we may share your information with our insurers or our indemnity providers or other professional advisors if we believe that this will enable us to resolve your complaint more effectively.

6. Data Protection

6.1 We will use the personal information you provide to us to:

6.1.1 provide the Veterinary Services and Products;6

6.1.2 process your payments for the Veterinary Services and Products; and

6.1.3 inform you about the products and services that we or selected third parties provide, but you may                           stop receiving these at any time by contacting us.

6.2 In order to provide the services above, we use selected third parties to process your data. More information about third party processing can be requested from the Chief Operating Officer of The Ralph.

7. Miscellaneous

7.1 No alterations may be made to these terms and conditions without our express written consent. We may update or amend these terms and conditions at any time by placing a notice to that effect in our premises.

7.2 These terms and conditions shall be governed by English Law and we and you submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts, without prejudice to our right to seek recovery of any sum due by you before any complaint court.

7.3 The care given to your pet may involve making some specific investigations, for example taking radiographs or performing ultrasound or MRI scans. Case records including x-rays and ultrasound or MRI scans are the property of, and shall be retained by, us. Copies with a summary of the history of any patient can be passed to another veterinary surgeon taking over a case, on written request to us and upon settlement in full of all sums due to us in respect of such patient’s treatment by us.