Estate Planning for Pets
New York City Pet Trusts Attorneys
Many people view their Pets as being an integral part of their lives and their families. They worry about who will take care of their beloved pet when they are no longer able to do so. There are a few options available to Pet owners to make sure that their Pet is cared for even if they are no longer able to do it themselves.
Leaving Money for a Caretaker in a Will: Pets are considered to be property and therefore money and other assets cannot be left to them directly. A Caretaker can be appointed in their Will and money to be used for the care of the Pet can be left to the Caretaker. Sometimes this may not be the most optimal solution as a Will only comes into effect after the owner of the Pet has passed away and does not help in the event that the owner is still alive but has become incapacitated and cannot care for their Pet. Also, leaving money directly to a caretaker for your pet does not guarantee that they will not take the money and then abandon your pet, therefore, it is important to name someone you trust as the caretaker of your Pet.
Pet Trusts: With a Pet Trust the Trustor (the person who created the Trust) can appoint a Trustee to manage the assets in the Trust for the benefit of the Pet. A caretaker can also be named and they get paid on a regular basis for the care of the Pet thereby insuring that they cannot take the money and then simply abandon your Pet. You can leave detailed instructions on how you would like your Pet to be cared for. You can also appoint someone to oversee the care that your Pet is receiving and that their Caretaker is abiding by the terms of the Trust. In the event that they are not, you can also name another caretaker who will take over if the first is unable to fulfill their responsibilities.