Long Beach Pet Trusts Law Firm
Having a pet is a responsibility that extends beyond our own lifetime. Although no one likes to think of our pets in distress, what will happen to your beloved companion following your death or disability? Will your pet live a comfortable life well cared for or become one of over a half million pets euthanized each year because no one is available to take responsibility for them?
Making a plan for your pet’s well being is the quickest, easiest way to ensure your furry loved one is always comfortable, fed, housed and cared for after you are gone.
What is a pet trust?
A pet trust is a type of estate plan that provides for your pets after your own death or disability. Like other trusts, a pet trust is a legal entity developed for a specific purpose. In the case of a pet trust, the purpose is to ensure your pet’s best health, happiness and care after you are deceased or otherwise unable to provide that care, yourself.
Without a pet trust no one is responsible for taking care of your pets after you are gone. Your closest companion could end up in a shelter – or worse – soon after your departure. A pet trust provides for your pet’s quality of life and legally obligates a trustee to provide ongoing care.
The attorneys of California Elder Law Center PC have decades of experience in estate planning, including pet trusts. Together with your California Elder Law Center PC attorney, you can ensure your pet’s future is as comfortable and bright as you want for them within a pet trust.
How does a pet trust differ from a provision for your pet in a will?
Although providing for your pet in your will makes your wishes clear, there are negative aspects to using a will to care for your pet. This is because domesticated animals are considered personal property.
Since wills go through sometimes lengthy probate periods, your pet, like your other household items, can exist within an uncertain limbo before any responsibility for the animal is ensured. Meanwhile, this much-loved living and breathing personal property still needs affection, attention, food, shelter, medical care and recreation.
Pet trusts are unlike wills, in that the trust is immediately effective upon your death or disability. There is no probate or waiting period. The details specified by your trust in regard to your pet’s well-being ensure the right caregivers for your loved animal are immediately responsible for providing that care using funds you have designated for this purpose.
Through a pet trust, you can leave very clear instructions regarding your pet’s financial well-being, daily living, veterinary attention, physical possession and eventual burial.
Three Types of Pet Trusts
There are three primary types of pet trusts, for most situations. Those are:
- Statutory Pet Trust:
Some states have statutes permitting enforceable pet trusts. These trusts provide for assurance that the pet is cared for according to the trust’s terms through the designation of a third party who oversees the caregiver’s use of trust funds.
- Honorary Trust:
While this type of trust sets up funds for use in caring for the pet, it is largely unenforceable because it is not specifically designed for a pet and does not designate a definite beneficiary.
- Traditional Legal Trust:
A traditional legal trust is one of the best types of trust for pet care. It can be written to include both the pet and funds as the trust focus. A caretaker is designated as the beneficiary, with or without a trustee to oversee the beneficiary’s pet care and fund use.
Contact Pet Trust Attorneys of California Elder Law Center PC
Attorneys of the California Elder Law Center PC are dedicated to ensuring our clients and their loved ones are protected from issues many people encounter as part of aging. This commitment includes protection of pets through pet trusts. Our vast experience and skill help us provide the best possible advocacy for individuals and their families.
The California Elder Law Center PC will help you understand your options in regard to pet trusts and your own protections for assurance of a safe, stable future. For a free initial consultation with our pet trust and elder law attorneys, please call us at 562-377-7710 or toll free at 877-377-7411. You may also contact us online.