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but also specific instructions that would keep her and pet companions together even during hospitalization. However, Pet Trusts are not just for the rich and famous anymore.
Most people view their pets as family members and just as family members leave assets to their loved ones in a Will or Trust, so too can individuals leave assets to their pets in a trust to provide for their care. A Pet Trust is a way an individual can provide continuous care for their pet during the owner’s disability and death. Without proper planning, a pet may be left to the whims of an informal arrangement or the compassion of a shelter.
Informal arrangements do not always turn out as the pet owner expected. For instance, the desired caretaker may have lease restrictions, allergies, or other life altering plans that do not include care for the pet. Therefore, the pet may be abandoned or given to a shelter at the owner’s death or disability.
A Pet Trust is a legally enforceable agreement between the pet owner and caretaker which can outline, among other things, the daily routine and care of the pet. It may also set aside money for special diets, veterinary cost, toys, travel, groomers, walkers, and disposition of the pet after he/she dies. It also can provide funding options to pay for any financial burdens incurred by the caretaker adopting the pet into their family. Furthermore back-up caretakers can be named on a pet by pet basis. The remainder of the funds can be distributed to charities to further benefit animal causes.
The Potential Benefits of a Pet Trust
- Provides protection and continuing care for your pet in your absence
- Ensures that the pet owner and pet will remain together during the pet owner’s disability
- Eliminates the financial burdens placed on the caretaker
- Enforces the pet owner’s instructions so that your pet is given the attention, love, and devotion he or she deserves
With a sound plan, you can have the peace of mind that all of your pets needs are perpetually cared for.
This is not legal advice. For more information contact Britt Stouffer at Stouffer Legal, LLC at (443) 470-3599 or visit our website at www.stoufferlegal.com. See our ad on page 7.