When you are creating an estate plan, you are naturally going to provide for the people that you love. At the same time, you may love animals as well. Can you provide for your dog in your estate plan?
Let’s look at the facts.
Senior Citizens and Pet Ownership
Since humans have much longer lifespans than dogs, younger dog owners may not be particularly concerned about predeceasing their pets. However, this can be a very real issue for elders.
Dog ownership is an absolute joy for many people. When you have a four-legged best friend in your home, you always have a loving face reflecting back at you. Anyone can benefit from this experience, but it can be particularly meaningful for senior citizens.
Many seniors experience loneliness after losing a partner along the way. Their children are grown, they may have lost friends, and they are retired, so they no longer interact with coworkers on a daily basis.
If you are in this type of situation, a dog can be the perfect companion. The emotional benefits are obvious, but experts have stated that tangible health benefits can be realized when you bring a dog into your home.
There are many smaller breeds that can be ideal for seniors who cannot physically handle larger dogs.
Even small dogs can provide you with a sense of protection, because they are always going to react to strange sounds outside the door. You get more exercise when you have a dog, and you may interact with other dog owners as you visit the dog park or take your dog for a walk.
There are seniors who know that a dog would be a great addition to the family, but they take pause because of longevity concerns. This is understandable, but you can effectively provide for your dog in your estate plan.
Many states in the union allow for the creation of pet trusts. This type of trust is available to California residents.
When you create a pet trust, you name a trustee to administer the trust after your passing, and you fund the trust. You create a trust agreement, and you leave behind instructions that the trustee must follow. The trustee will be legally compelled to follow these instructions, so the pet will be cared for in accordance with your wishes.
You name a secondary beneficiary who would assume ownership of anything that is left in the trust after the death of the pet, so you don’t have to worry about over-funding the trust.
A pet trust can be the ideal solution for many pet owners.
Pet Planning Report
We have prepared a special report that examines pet planning in detail. If you would like to learn more about pet trusts, download your copy of the report.
This report is being offered on a complimentary basis, and you can access the download through this page: San Jose CA Pet Planning.