Living Will

Dealing with Pets in New Jersey Wills

While money, cars, and houses can be important aspects of a will, sometimes our most precious possessions are our family pets. If you are planning your estate in New Jersey, you may be wondering what will happen to your beloved cat or dog after your passing. How can you ensure that your pet receives the best possible attention after your passing? How can you control who gets ownership of your pet? What additional considerations should you keep in mind when dealing with pets in New Jersey wills?

If you need to make sure that these small but important details are accounted for in your New Jersey will, it is best to reach out to an experienced estate planning attorney in New Jersey. These legal experts are extremely familiar with the unique laws that govern pet trusts in the Garden State, and they can help you make the right decision for your beloved pet. Professional estate planning attorneys understand that these valuable companions are worth their own fair share of time and consideration when planning your estate.

Can You Leave Money to Your Pet?

New Jersey law clearly states that you cannot leave money to your pet in a will. This is because a pet is legally classified as a piece of property. One piece of property cannot legally be given to another piece of property. However, there are certain strategies that you can use to make sure your pet has a good life after your passing. You can also set aside resources that a caretaker can use to care for your pet.

Limitations on Pet Trusts in New Jersey

According to the pet trust statute in New Jersey, there are a number of notable limitations and privileges you should be aware of. First of all, there is a 21-year limit for the term of the trust. This is because the court assumes that most animals will not live longer than 21 years. However, many activists have pointed out that numerous animals can live significantly longer than 21 years.

In addition, New Jersey law states that you may not draft a valid trust for a wild, exotic, or dangerous animal, regardless of whether this animal is considered “domesticated.” Finally, you may also provide for the offspring of a trust beneficiary, but only if the beneficiary (the pet) is pregnant at the time the will is drafted.

Choose a Pet Trust Instead of a Will

You can leave your pet to another person in your will, and you can also leave a certain amount of money to that person. However, you cannot guarantee that this person will actually use the money to care for the pet. They may just spend it on themselves, and they will receive the money outright. A better option is a pet trust, as your trustee can oversee the use of certain funds set aside specifically for your pet’s care. New Jersey Assets Protection Attorney can help you with any issue relating to your Assets Protection. Contact us now.

Enlist the Help of a Qualified Estate Planning Attorney in New Jersey

If you would like to talk about your options, it is always best to consult with a qualified estate planning attorney in New Jersey. These experienced legal professionals can help you with virtually every aspect of your estate planning process, including matters related to pets. If you would like to make sure your pet has a good life after your passing, contact Giro, LLP, Attorneys at Law today.

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