Weinstein & Randisi
Toll free:800-768-1780

Resize the Content Text

How to provide for Fido or Fluffy from the grave

During 2012, nearly 70 percent of U.S. households had a pet. The most commonly owned and beloved pets are cats and dogs and an increasing number of pet owners are taking steps to ensure and provide for their pet's future wellbeing. We've likely all witnessed pet owners who treat their pets much like a family member or child. For some pet owners; trips to the groomer, daycare provider or pet psychologist are routine and considered necessary.

Given the amount of time and assets Americans spend on their pets, it's no surprise that a growing number of pet owners are taking estate planning steps to provide for a pet in a will or trust. A 2012 study by the American Pet Products Association showed that nine percent of dog and cat owners named a pet in a will or had established a pet trust.

A total of 46 states currently allow a pet owner to name a pet in a will or set up a pet trust to provide for a pet's future care. While a pet owner may consider Fido or Fluffy a member of the family, in estate planning pets are regarded and treated as property. Because of this, a pet owner is not allowed to directly will assets to a pet. While money can be left in a will to a designated pet caretaker, that individual is under no legal obligation to keep the pet or use the assets to care for or provide for the pet.

A pet trust, therefore, is an attractive option for those pet owners wishing to provide for a pet's future care and financial needs. When setting up an estate plan, those pet owners who wish to provide for a pet from the grave would be wise to discuss their wishes with an attorney who can ensure a will or pet trust accomplishes a pet owner's goals.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "More Americans Are Writing Their Pets Into Their Wills," Anne Tegesen, Jan. 12, 2014

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • I wanted to write to say how pleased my wife and I were at your professional handling of our estate planning and preparation of new wills. We were put at ease by your visit to our home for an interview and were pleased that you listened to us and captured the things that we felt were important.

    --Robert and Christine Simonson, Fairport
  • In order to finalize the documents we came to your office and were greeted in a very professional manner and we could not have asked for finer service. We left with copies of everything we needed and feel very confident our needs have been met. Thanks again. We will surely recommend you should the opportunity arise.

    — Christine and Robert Simonson, Fairport
  • I have been working with Weinstein & Randisi for about two years now. Elizabeth Randisi, through a very thorough process, has helped my wife and me determine what is really important in our lives. Thus, we were able to draft a living will that reflected our most important values regarding our estate.

    --David and Ajia Cherry, Fairport
  • I would like to give a testimony for Elizabeth Randisi, an estate attorney with Weinstein & Randisi. Her knowledge of wills and estate planning was clearly demonstrated in her presentation to us. Realizing our need for a will, my husband and I went to see Elizabeth.

    --Kathy and Gary Gray, Webster
  • Filing for Medicaid is never an easy or fun process. However, working with the Weinstein & Randisi firm made the process simple and streamlined. We were able to obtain all files and records regarding Medicaid enrollment within a few days using specially prepared checklists and verbiage recommended by our assigned paralegal.

    --Ajia and David Cherry, Fairport
Awarded Top 50 Estate Planning Blog
Email Us For a Response

How Can We Help You?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Blog Feed


Weinstein & Randisi - estate planning

290 Linden Oaks, Ste. 200
Rochester, NY 14625

Toll Free: 800-768-1780
Phone: 585-310-1578
Rochester Law Office Map


Call us now for a free, 100% confidential consultation: