Do you need a pet trust?

If you live on your own in North Carolina, who’s going to take care of your pets after you die? You might have friends who agree to take your pets, but they could change their minds or realize that your pets are more expensive than they anticipated. To prevent this from happening, you could form a trust for your pet.

What is a pet trust?

When you write your will, you can set up a trust that dispenses cash and properties to your loved ones. Many people don’t realize that they can also set up a trust for their pets. Like a regular trust, you’ll place cash and properties in the trust that allow the caregiver to pay for your pet’s living expenses. You could nominate a trustee to make sure that the caregiver doesn’t misuse the funds.

When it comes to estate planning and trust planning, you’re not just writing a list of instructions: You’re writing legally binding documents that the executors have to honor. This means you could include special instructions for your pet, like what food their caregivers should buy or how often they should take them to the vet. An estate planning attorney may help you prepare for your pet’s life after your death.

How can you take care of your pet after your death?

If you don’t mention your pet in your estate plans, you have no control over what happens to them after your death. An attorney may help you choose a caregiver for your pet and include this person in your will. To help them pay for expenses, you could also set up a trust with cash and properties. Otherwise, your pet’s new owner might not be able to afford to take care of them, especially if you’re dealing with a large animal like a horse. An attorney may help ensure that the trust is funded to provide for your pet when you’re no longer around.