Posted on: 25 April 2019Share
If you're in the process of planning your estate, don't forget about your beloved pet. They'll need to be cared for following your passing. Unfortunately, if you haven't left clear instructions, your pet could end up being passed around between family members or placed in an animal shelter. Here are four steps you should take to ensure that your pet continues to be cared for after you pass.
Include Your Pet in the Will
When preparing for the care of your pet, the most important step you can take is to name them in the will. Including your pet in the will ensures that your loved ones know exactly how you want your pet to be cared for. It also ensures that measures are taken to provide for your pets needs long after you've passed away.
Create a Pet Trust
Once you've named your pet in the will, you'll need to create a pet trust. The purpose of the trust is to ensure that the caretaker and trustee are assigned to the care of your pet. The trust also allows you to provide specific instructions for the care of your pet, as well as determining how funds will be spent. As an added benefit, since trusts are protected from the probate process, your pet will have immediate access to much-needed funds for its continued care.
Choose the Right Caretaker
As stated above, the creation of the trust will allow you to choose a caretaker for your pet. When choosing the caretaker, it's crucial that you take your time with the selection process. You'll want to choose someone whom you know will love and care for your pet. You also want your chosen caretaker to be someone with the capacity to provide the level of care that you want for your pet. Before you designate a caretaker, talk to them about your desire. This will give them the opportunity to agree to their selection and prepare for the eventual event.
Ensure the Proper Level of Care
When it comes to providing for your pet, you want to make sure that your estate plan ensures the proper level of care. This includes providing adequate monetary assets to your chosen caretaker. One way to do that is to add up how much you spend on your pet each year and then multiple that by how many years your pet should be expected to survive once you pass. This will give you a good idea as to how much you should allocate to the care of your pet. If you feel that you won't be able to provide enough for your pets care, purchase small life insurance policy and name your pets chosen caretaker as the beneficiary.
Don't take chances with the care of your beloved pet. Now that you're planning your estate, use the information provided here to ensure that your pet is cared for after you pass. For help with your estate planning, be sure to consult an attorney near you.
To learn more, visit Abom & Kutulakis LLP.