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Pet trusts are becoming more commonplace

Americans have a love affair with their pets. In many homes, these animals have taken on the role of cherished children and are cared for in a loving and even doting manner. Arizona pet owners who are concerned about their companions' future well-being may consider the benefits of setting up trusts for their future care.

Traditionally, only celebrities or those with significant wealth took the time to ensure that their pets would be cared for after their owners' passing. These days, more and more pet owners are establishing pet care trusts as a common part of estate planning. Setting up these trusts can provide peace of mind that a beloved pet will continue to receive the care to which the family companion has become accustomed. Through clear instructions to a chosen trustee, owners will ensure that their plans provide for adequate funding of a trust that will be used to provide for appropriate care of these pets, including provisions for where the pet will reside.

Along with establishing a pet care trust, one must ensure that the selected trustee is willing and able to take on the role. These trusts can be funded during the pet owner's lifetime. To accomplish this, the owner must set the required assets aside to establish the trust. Many estate planning attorneys actually ask their clients whether a pet trust would be appropriate for their particular planning needs.

Without protective provisions in a will or an established trust, a beloved pet could potentially be turned over to a shelter or even be euthanized. Arizona residents who are preparing to begin the process of estate planning may wish to consider whether pet care trusts make sense for their circumstances. An experienced attorney can provide guidance as to what tools could be most beneficial for a client's needs.

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