Protecting Your Pets with Probate Code §15212 and Pet Trusts

In 2009, California Probate Code §15212 came into effect with a legal focus on how animals are cared for after their owners pass away. Pets are given rights no different than inherited family heirlooms. But thanks to this probate code, there is finally a way to provide advanced planning for the future care of your loveable critters by establishing a pet trust.

Pet trusts are a means to provide your inheritors and loved ones with directions on how to care for your pets after you pass away. It can give great relief to you in knowing that there are legally binding guidelines that have been created with your pets’ best interests in mind. Typically, all that is required from you, other than the pet trust itself, is that money is set aside that can only be used for your pets’ care.

Before you create a pet trust, you should be aware that there are two forms you can use. A testamentary trust goes into effect upon your passing and after any of your wills go through probate. A statutory trust takes immediate effect and allows you to name successors to the conditions of the trust.

Within the body of whatever trust you choose, you can begin to outline the specific treatments your pets require. You can be as vague or as detailed as you feel necessary, and you can include any number of pets that you like. That is one of the main benefits of a trust – the unparalleled flexibility.

Particular details you may want to include regarding the care for your animals include:

  • Feeding schedules, including the kind of food necessary
  • Shelter conditions
  • Exercise regimens
  • Veterinary care
  • Required companionship, such as time set aside for play

If you need help creating a pet trust that ensures your loved animals will be properly cared for after your passing, you should seek the legal counsel of Los Angeles pet trust lawyer Shelley Rios. Her firm has dedicated many years to the fair treatment of animals, including the founding of The Animal Protectorates™ (TAPS), an organization devoted to providing support and financial aid to programs involving animal welfare. You can rest assured that Attorney Shelley Rios will do all she can to give your pets a comfortable, healthy life, even after you pass away.

For more information about pet trusts or TAPS, please feel free to contact the firm today.

Categories: TAPS, Pet Trusts