Burlington estate planning attorneys can offer you assistance and advice in making plans to protect your loved ones in case something happens to you. When you think about the plans that you want to make in order to protect your loved ones, you need to consider not just what will happen to the human members of your family, but also whether you have a plan in place for any animals who are under your care.
Your pets depend upon you for their safety and security and they can end up in a very difficult situation if you have not made advanced plans to provide for their care if you become incapacitated or if you pass away. You do not want to jeopardize your animal’s future, so reach out to Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC today to find out about the assistance our Burlington estate planning attorneys can provide to you in making a comprehensive pet plan.
How You Can Make a Plan to Protect Your Pets in Case Of Your Incapacity or Death
If you become incapacitated or you pass away, you won’t be able to care for your animals any more so you will need to designated someone to take care of them for you. The ASPCA indicates there are approximately 7.6 million companion animals who are surrendered each year and an estimated 2.7 million of the surrendered animals are euthanized. There is a risk that your pet could become one of these animals if you have not made plans to provide for the pet’s care if you become unable to care for the animal yourself.
You should talk with the person who you hope to name as your animal’s caregiver before you actually go through the process of making a pet plan and designating your chosen person to be the animal’s guardian. You should make sure that the chosen caregiver is willing to take on the responsibility of taking care of the animal for the rest of the pet’s life if something should happen to you. Because circumstances can sometimes change even after you have talked with your chosen caregiver, it is also a very good idea to name a backup person who will take care of your pets if your first choice caregiver ends up being unable to do so at the time of your incapacity or at the time of your death.
You should also think about providing funding for the care of your animals as pet care can be expensive and you do not want your pet to have a reduced quality of life or to be unable to undergo needed veterinary care because of funds. You could leave money in a last will and testament, but of course animals cannot inherit or manage money directly. One of your best options for making sure that money you leave behind is actually used to provide for your pet is to create a trust.
When you create a trust, you can designated a chosen person to manage the trust assets and to follow your instructions set forth in the trust document for using the wealth in the trust to care for your pet. The trustee will have a fiduciary duty to follow your wishes when it comes to how the money and property in the trust is used, so you can rest assured that the money will definitely be used to care for your animals in the way you see fit.
Getting help from Burlington Estate Planning Attorneys
Burlington estate planning attorneys at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC can assist with creating a pet plan that is right for your specific family situation. Whether you simply need to make sure your pets have a guardian if something happens to you or whether you want to create a trust to provide financially for the care of your animals when you pass on, we can provide the help and the support that you need.
To find out more about how our firm can assist you, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at (802) 879-7133 or contact us online to get help making your pet plan and taking the other steps necessary to put together a comprehensive estate plan that takes care of all of the people and animals who matter in your life.