If you are single you may not have children, but you most likely have one
or more pets that you cherish like family. What would happen to your beloved
pet if you unexpectedly died or became hospitalized? Have you put a plan in place?
English: Yorkies Teddy and Bella Русский: Йорки Тедди и Белла
Let’s start with the unwanted, but possible scenario of you being
in a car accident and ending up in the hospital unable to communicate.
Who knows that you have a pet that needs care? Is your pet sitter’s
or vet’s phone number in your cell phone so that someone can even
be alerted that you have a pet? (Writing this has prompted me to take
a break and add these numbers to my own cell phone.)
Does your Durable Power of Attorney give your agent the ability to spend
your money on care for your pet, including vet care? Your agent has a
duty to look after your best interests; you have to authorize the agent
to also look after your pet’s best interests.
Let’s move on to the even more unwanted scenario of you dying in
the car accident rather than being hospitalized. Who is going to be your
pet’s next pet parent? Have you put a plan for your pet in place
in your will or trust? If you have selected a back-up pet parent, does
this person know you have named him or her in your will or trust? Have
you set aside funds, or as one of my client’s calls it “a
dowry” to help make absorbing a new member of the household financially
easier for the new pet parent?
As much as we don’t want to think that our pets will have to live
without us, we owe it to our pet family members to put a plan in place
to provide for their well being if we personally no longer can. After
all, they depend on us as much as we depend on them.