Many pet owners find it difficult to describe how much love and affection exists between them and their fur babies. It is almost too much to put into words, but the bottom line is that they love them. Furthermore, they are more than just pets — they are family. It really is that simple. For that reason alone, your friends here at Leigh Hilton PLLC have written several articles over the years with advice on how to provide for both your family and pets in your estate planning strategy.
Without rehashing all of that information, we would like to talk about an additional item of interest many of our clients are utilizing. It is called a Letter of Intent. While this document is not legally enforceable — as, say, adding your pet to your will or trust — it is an invaluable tool to help those you have entrusted with your pet’s care after you are gone.
We happily encourage and support this sentiment with carefully drawn documents worthy of those relationships.
A Letter of Intent will include any of the following information:
- Your pet’s legal name and nickname
- Pedigree information, if applicable
- Names and contact information for the veterinarian and groomer
- Information regarding the pet trust, caregiver, and trustee
- Shot records and schedule of care
- What medical conditions exist
- Dietary needs and preferences
- What type of food the pet prefers
- Favorite toys, walking routes, and treats
- Daily schedule
- Where your pet sleeps
- Anything else that helps ensure your pet’s comfort and health
If you have more than one pet, provide all of the above information for each one. You can also specify that two or more pets should stay together. Remember to provide copies of all documents and instructions to everyone concerned: the caregiver, trustee, vet, groomer, and the estate planning lawyer.
Following these steps makes it much easier for everyone to cooperate on behalf of your pet.
Call Leigh Hilton PLLC today!!
Flexibility in estate planning is important, especially when you have a pet that needs to be cared for when you cannot. Please call Leigh Hilton PLLC so that we can help ensure your pet will be taken care of in the best way possible.
Proper planning is essential. Leigh Hilton PLLC wants to be your first call every time for any estate planning need.
We look forward to serving you. Thanks for reading!