Saturday, February 2, 2019
Gerry W. Beyer (Texas Tech) & Barry Seltzer, Don't Forget About Pets When Planning for Disability and Death, 42:3 Generations 109 (2018):
Dogs, cats, parrots, and other pet animals play significant roles in the lives of many individuals. The bond between a pet owner and his or her companion is strong, and recent studies show that this bond can be even deeper with older owners. Accordingly, it is of vital importance to include pets when a pet owner, especially an older one, makes plans for disability and death. This article provides an overview of the techniques a pet owner should consider when planning his or her estate.
It is important for pet owners to make provisions in their estate plans for their beloved pets and to know the available options. We hope pet owners will consult their estate planning attorneys to create plans to assure that their trusted companions are well cared for in the event of disability or death. It is also a good idea to notify close friends and-or family of these plans, as this may increase the chances that there will be a seamless transition for Fido or Fluffy.
There is one final consideration. Despite the need for regular review, studies show that most people revisit their pet plans only about once every two decades, rather than every two or three years. Don’t be one of them. You or your chosen caregivers circumstances may change drastically over even a short time. For both interim and longterm pet care plans, remember to update them regularly to reflect any such variations.