Including your pets in your estate plan will require action on your part.
Do you have pets?
Are they your fur babies?
Perhaps they are fine feathered friends.
No matter the type, pets can be like family whether they have feathers, fins, or fur.
Although you may not want to think about it, what will happen to Fluffy when you die?
According to a recent article in The Milwaukee Community Journal titled “What Happens to Your Pet When You Die–How to Plan for Them Now,” your Fluffy may be left with no provision if you do not specifically include her in your estate planning.
How do you provide for Fluffy?
Did you know, in the eyes of the law, Fluffy is considered your property, just like your sofa.
This means you can pass Fluffy to a loved one in your will.
What if you do not have a will?
Fluffy could be passed to a beneficiary chosen by state law or a much worse fate.
Leave money for the care of the pet.
Do you trust the caregiver designated in your will to use the funds provided to care for Fluffy?
If yes, then you can simply leave money to the caregiver in your will.
Set up a pet trust.
Do you want to have greater control and provide more direction regarding the care of Fluffy?
Did you know you can create a pet trust anywhere in the United States to provide financially for Fluffy?
You can provide legally documented instructions, name an individual to manage the funds, and even another individual to care for Fluffy.
This provides more oversight and accountability than merely leaving money to a friend.
Donate money to a pet rescue charity.
Want to provide for Fluffy and other orphaned pets? Consider leaving Fluffy in the care of a no-kill sanctuary, while also providing financial resources for other animals by your charitable contribution.
You cannot afford to leave any loved one out of your estate planning—including your Fluffy.
Work with an experienced estate planning attorney to create a plan to fit your unique situation.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: Milwaukee Community Journal (June 5, 2018) “What Happens to Your Pet When You Die–How to Plan for Them Now”