When you hear the words “pet trust,” do stories of eccentric, wealthy, single people leaving fabulous gifts to their pets spring into your mind? In reality, a pet trust can be a wonderful idea for any pet owners who want to make sure that their pets are cared for in the event of their passing away before their pet does. Let us take a look at three reasons to consider a pet trust in your estate plan.
1. Naming Someone to Care for Your Pet. When you create a pet trust, the pet owner, the trust “grantor,” makes a gift to a trust in the pet’s name and names a trustee, to handle the finances, and also a caregiver for the pet. By choosing someone you trust, who you know is good with animals and would be willing and able to give your pet a good home, you can help avoid any issues that might transpire. For example, your heirs cannot agree on who should take your pet or a situation where a friend or relative would have been happy to be the caregiver, but did not know that it was your intention for them to do so. This can be particularly helpful if you want a friend to be your pet’s caregiver rather than a family member.
2. Making Sure Your Pet’s Caregiver Has Financial Resources. The best person to care for your pet may be ready and willing to take on the task, but unable to afford the associated expenses alone. Pets come with costs like food and toys, but more importantly, also with medical bills, especially as they age. When you create a pet trust, you can contribute enough funds to cover both regular expenses and medical care that may be necessary down the road. You could also purchase a pet insurance plan in the name of the trust and have the trust pay the premiums.
3. Always Knowing You Have a Backup Plan. Perhaps the most important component of creating a pet trust as part of your estate plan may be to give you peace of mind. Pets can be part of the family. Knowing your furry family member will ultimately be well cared for is a gift.
For more information on how to establish a trust for your beloved pet, contact our office to schedule an appointment.