Family Pets

Many pet owners ask us how they can ensure continuing care for their pets is in place after their death, they do not realise that a family pet can be gifted specifically through a clause in their Will.

They should consider who they wish to look after their animals and whether they ought to make financial provision for the ongoing care and upkeep of the animal.

As we all know the upkeep of an animal can be expensive, this can range from the cost of feeding and grooming up to expensive vet bills. This can be off-putting for a potential beneficiary so we always advise consideration of an appropriate gift of money to the beneficiary conditional upon them taking on the care of the animal

There is also a special type of trust for the upkeep of the animal. This is known as a ‘trust of imperfect obligation’ as the object of the trust (family pet) cannot enforce it. This type of trust will only last for up to 21 years. This period is usually sufficient to cover the lives of most common household pets.

Whatever option they choose, we always encourage our clients to write a letter of wishes to provide their beneficiary with details on how their pets should be cared for.

If there is no one suitable to take on the care of the animals, then we advise they should consider leaving the animals to the care of a charity instead. The RSPCA run a ‘home for life’ scheme that a person may register their animals with during lifetime. The executors would then notify the RSPCA of the owner’s death, and the charity will aim to suitably rehome the animal. This gives the owner the peace of mind that their animals will be cared for after their death.

1 June 2018

The views expressed in this blog do not in any way constitute advice and are specific to the date noted. As time passes the facts can change and readers should consult their adviser for up to date advice on any matters covered within the blog. Invest Southwest offers an initial review, which is free of charge, however long it takes. From this we will be able to confirm how we can help and give you an opportunity to decide if you would like us to. Thereafter, we will provide you with detailed recommendations and exact costs. Please note that we promise not to levy any kind of fee unless we can demonstrate a benefit to you.

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