What is the purpose of a pet trust in Pennsylvania?
Before delving into what a pet trust is, it is important to understand the role of a trust in an estate plan. A trust is an agreement that permits a trustee to have responsibility for assets until the beneficiary inherits them. A trustor applies to the individual who creates a trust. The person who inherits the assets within the trust is referred to as a beneficiary. A trustee is a third party that manages the trust on behalf of the beneficiary.
In the state of Pennsylvania, a pet trust is used to designate funds and any wishes on behalf of a pet. This can be performed in a number of ways. A pet trust can be made through a will, as a part of a revocable living trust, or a stand-alone trust. It is important to keep in mind that if you would like to create a trust for your pet, the terms must be specifically expressed regarding the pet's health care, veterinarians, burial, and how funds should be allocated when the pet eventually passes away.
If you have questions or concerns about pet trusts in Pennsylvania, it is in your best interest out to our firm today to speak with one of our experienced legal team members. Our estate planning attorneys are here for you.
How do I begin the creation of a pet trust?
The first step in creating a pet trust is choosing a trustee. In most cases, it is more beneficial to pick a trustee that is different from the person that has custodial liability for the pet. This permits the trustee to handle the finances while the other person can serve as the guardian of the pet. When doing this, you will want to make sure that your choices are made with your pet's best interest in mind.
Once you have picked the guardian and trustee, you will need to make them aware of their duties. Once the appointed individuals affirm their duties, an official document can be drafted with an inter vivos trust or testamentary trust. Basically, the use of this document gives an individual the capability to plan out the care they want their pets to receive. An individual can then allocate enough funds for the rest of the pet's life. Additionally, an individual may want to choose other trustees or guardians as a backup. If you have an experienced estate planning attorney on your side, you will be able to feel more comfortable knowing that your pet's interests will be protected once you are not around anymore. Reach out to our firm today to retain the services of a competent estate planning attorney.