Pet Trust

Definition - What does Pet Trust mean?

A pet trust is a legal mechanism that provides for the care of a companion animal if its owner dies or is otherwise unable to meet its needs. Specifically, it allows the owner to allocate funds for the animal's food, shelter, healthcare and so forth. It also allows the owner to determine who will care for the pet and/or manage the money designated for its care.

Justipedia explains Pet Trust

Traditionally, the law has regarded all animals—including pets—as property, and treated them accordingly. However, most Americans now think of their pets as family members, and this view is gradually prompting changes in legal thinking. One result is the creation of laws in all 50 states and the District of Columbia that provide for the creation of pet trusts.

In a basic pet trust, the owner usually specifies the amount to be used for pet care and how often the funds should be distributed, and names the person or people who should get custody of the animal(s). However, more detailed instructions regarding diet, veterinary care and other needs unique to the animal(s) are also acceptable.

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