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How a Pet Trust can Care for Your Beloved Furry Kids

04/25/2017

How a Pet Trust Can Care for Your Beloved Furry Kids

If your household includes pets, whether they have fur, feathers or fins, you can use a pet trust to protect pets when you have passed away or when you are no longer able to take care of your pets or yourself. A pet trust provides specific instructions to caretakers and also provides funding.

AZ Central’s article, “Who will care for your beloved pet after you're gone? A trust can help with that,” says that it's hard to guess the number of people who have trusts to benefit pets. It’s still a relatively new concept. However, more people are learning that you can and should include pets in estate planning. Many pet lovers find that a trust is appealing and worth the cost.

A trust lets assets be transferred to others without going through probate. They also can provide ongoing financial support for beneficiaries who might burn though a lump sum. A revocable living trust can be changed, dissolved or redrafted, while you're still living and competent.

These are packaged frequently with documents like a pour-over will (for assets not titled into the trust) and financial and health-care powers of attorney, which appoints another person to act on your behalf in case of incapacity.

A pet trust designates a trusted person or organization to provide ongoing care for your animals and gives them the money to do so. Many people make informal arrangements. They ask friends or relatives to take in their animals, but without a trust or other legal document, there's no guarantee that your instructions will be followed.

As part of the process, an owner can detail how much medical care should be given to a pet, especially an older one (when euthanasia might be the preferred route). Trusts can help you prepare for those and other contingencies, so you’d have some control over what happens to your pet.

Designating the right trustee is critical. That is the person or organization entrusted with carrying out your wishes.

If you decide not to create a pet trust and just hope that writing down some instructions and coming to an agreement with a friend or relative will protect your pet, remember that this will not be legally binding. There would be nothing stopping your friend or family member from leaving your pet at a shelter and taking the money for their own use. With a trust, you gain peace of mind.

Do you live in Miami-Dade, Broward, or Palm Beach counties in Florida? Laws are constantly changing-- has your estate plan been reviewed in the last 2-3 years? Call me (954-888-1747) right away for peace of mind. I can help!

  • My practice is exclusively estate planning and probate,
  • I have prepared numerous estate plans in 16 years of practice,
  • I have administered estates and trusts through Probate all over Florida,
  • I am a Certified Financial Planner Professional™, and
  • I am here for YOU today and there for your FAMILY tomorrow.

Reference: AZ Central (March 25, 2017) “Who will care for your beloved pet after you're gone? A trust can help with that”

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Two words cannot sum up the entire process of creating my “trust.” I enjoyed your attention to detail, your patience of explaining terms and conditions until I understood, also giving me copies to read and understand. Thank you for your suggestions on what was best for “me” but still allowing me to make my choice. Most of all, thank you for thinking of “me.” Wells Fargo said “you were the best” I cannot deny that. Again thank you very much for everything. Anna is an asset or a compliment to the firm. She is warm and very caring. It was great doing business. Thank you.

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