You may remember last year when hotel and real estate magnate Leona Hemsley died, leaving 12 million dollars to her dog, a white Maltese named Trouble. You can view the story of her extraordinary gift in the Washington Post Newspaper. She apparently left two of her grandchildren nothing ‘for reasons known to them” but left millions to her beloved pet.
While the amount may have been extraordinary, it is becoming more commonplace for pet owners to provide for their pets in their will or trust. Even people of modest estates may set aside a certain sum of money to see that their pet is taken care of. $500 to $5000 may not be unrealistic for care of a beloved dog, cat, or horse. Horses may require even more money to maintain as they can often outlive their owners. It is not uncommon for horses to live to be 20 – 30 years old. Expenses for caring for a horse can be as much as $ 5000 – 10,000 per year for such items as food, boarding, vet care, and farrier services.
Estate planning for your pet can be done by incorporating provisions in your own trust or setting up a separate pet trust.
At Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, we can add provisions to your existing trust to provide for pets, or incorporate provisions into a new estate plan. Protect not only your pets but even more important, your heirs, by creating a living trust. Contact us for a complimentary consultation about this or any other estate planning issue.