What will happen to my pet when I die?

12th November 2019

What will happen to my pet when I die?

Although some people treat their pets like children whilst they are alive, they need to consider what might happen if they die before them.

Many people assume that a relative or close friend will step up to take care of them but often this is not the case. How can you make provision for them after you have gone?

One way is by making a Will. As with guardians for children, you can name someone that you trust in your Will to look after them. However, you first need to check with that person that they are happy to take on that task if need be.

You also need to take into account that animals can be expensive to look after and depending on their age and health, the costs involved in caring for them could be considerable over a long period of time. As with all things food, vets bills, insurance and other expenses can soon add up. Therefore, by leaving a sum of money to help with their upkeep is a good idea too. This can be included in the Will by way of a trust. Although you cannot leave money to the animal itself, it can be set up in the Will with various conditions attached to it. This can give you peace of mind and ensures that your pet is cared for as they should be. A solicitor can make sure when they draft the Will that the correct wording and clauses are used.

There are also various charities that run schemes whereby they will re-home or care for your pet for the rest of its life if you die before them. If you decide to take this course of action, it is always a good idea to include something in your Will.

What happens to my pet if I became seriously ill?

Obviously a Will only comes into effect when you die but have you considered what might happen if you became seriously ill.

Anything that impairs your ability to take care of your pet is very upsetting for both you and for them. However, by planning ahead and setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs this can be avoided.

When drawing up a Lasting Power of Attorney it can include guidance for your Attorneys if you were to have a pet at the time. It can include provisions to say what should happen if you are suddenly unable to make those sort of decisions yourself. Again, a solicitor can make sure when they draft the Lasting Power of Attorney that the correct wording is used.

If you would like to make a Will, contact Sally Pryke 01473 826306 on [email protected].

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