Do You Need a Pet Trust?

Wills & Trusts
pet trust

Do You Need a Pet Trust?Pet trusts are enforceable under New Jersey law. N.J.S.A. 3B: 11-38 states:

 1. a. A trust for the care of a domesticated animal is valid. The intended use of the principal or income may be enforced by a person designated for that purpose in the trust instrument, a person appointed by the court, or a trustee. The trust shall terminate when no living animal is covered by the trust, or at the end of 21 years, whichever occurs earlier.

This is all very fancy language to say that you can create a trust that allows money from your estate to be used specifically for the care of your beloved pet as long as he or she is alive. The way you set up a pet trust in order not to run afoul of the law is very important.  Just “leaving” your pet funds in your will as though they were human (and we all know they are better than human!) is not going to work.  You need a legal professional to assist you in creating a pet trust that carries out your wishes for your little buddy.

Pet trusts are not just for the wealthy. Anyone with a pet should consider a pet trust. Even a modest amount of funds in a trust for your pet can ensure that your relatives or friends take on your little loved one’s care. Gifts that reward specific caregivers for taking responsibility under a pet trust can also help  the safety of your dog or cat (or parrot, or turtle or whatever domesticated animal you have).

We have locations in Camden, Burlington, and Gloucester counties, and are happy to discuss your legal options. Call today to schedule a free consultation on how to protect your pet! 856-227-7888 or email [email protected].

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