For many of us, pets are members of the family. Here at the Slaton Schauer Law Firm, we even have an office dog named Sammy. This means that we understand the need to plan for a pet’s future as part of our own estate. So what are our estate planning options when it comes to pets?
One option is the “pet trust.” Creation of a pet trust permits you to make decisions today that can protect your dog, cat, or other pet in the future. We don’t want to run a risk that our pets could be neglected in the event of our own death or incapacity, right? We want to know that our beloved pets will be loved, protected, and properly cared for even if we aren’t there to do it ourselves!
What is a pet trust? In short, pet trusts are legal documents that give you the ability to set funds aside for your pet’s future care. These also permit you to specify the quality and type of care that your pet will receive.
Can a pet trust do anything else for us? Consider that this trust can also:
- Provide you with control, even after you’re gone.
- Stipulate medical care, daily schedules, and diet.
- Give the complete ability to revoke or alter the trust at any time.
- Permit you to designate a separate trustee who can manage funds and track spending.
A pet trust can be set up to become active upon your disability. Once you recover, you can once again regain personal control over your pet’s well-being. We can see the advantages, however, of having a plan in place in the event that we do not recover or do not heal fully enough to properly care for our furry (or feathery) friends. Also consider this: a pet trust is generally enforceable in court. We can gain a great deal of personal peace from knowing that our friend will be loved and cared for even if we are not able to do so.
Whether you have one pet or several, a pet trust may be right for both you and your pet.
If you’re ready to get started, contact our law firm online or give us a call at (512) 258-9455. We’re happy to help plan for your pet, as well as your human family members!