Wednesday, January 3, 2018
Sally passed away at age 82. She lived alone in her home except for her 12-year-old dog and an 11-year-old cat. Unfortunately, she had not planned for her pets in case of her own death or incapacity. When she passed away, no one was available to take her animals and they were shipped to a local shelter. Lack of pet planning is a pervasive problem for many forgotten pets that leaves family members scrambling to find accommodations for these animals after the death of a loved one. As one might expect, many of these once-beloved companions end up in shelters or worse. There are a number of steps pet-owners can take to prevent this: 1) include pets in a formal estate plan, 2) create a pet trust, 3) name someone as guardian to your pets, and 4) make sure planning documents are in a known location.
See Julie Bank, Message from Pasadena Humane Society: Don’t Omit Pet from Estate Planning, Pasadena Star-News, September 25, 2017.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.