Estate Planning

Prepare for Your Pet

YOUR Humane Society SPCA Reminds Animal Lovers that August is National “Make-A-Will” Month

Making a will is something no one wants to think about. At the same time, no one wants their assets to go to the State or to get tied up in court. Unfortunately, life can change in an instant. A prepared will or trust can provide peace of mind, having your assets, which includes your pet(s), distributed exactly as you instructed, including to those people or local charities that mean something significant to you.

Pets are recognized as property in Florida. We recommend that prior to your passing, pet owners have arrangements made with family, friends or neighbors as to who will receive your pet(s). We believe that shelters should be a last option and available to those animals who have no one. Ensure the future welfare of your surviving pets and have a plan for them should they outlive you. Florida Statute §736.0408 allows a PET TRUST as part of an individual’s estate planning, which is enforceable in court, and allows part of said estate to go towards care of a pet(s). It is best to assign a pet caregiver, provide funding for the pet’s lifetime care and have the trustee maintain asset control according to the owner’s wishes. In the case of a will, a temporary pet caretaker should be selected for the time between the owner's death and the admission of the will to probate. A charitable organization can be considered to care for and/or place your furry companion if no friend or relative can take on your pet.

A local supporter and happy adopter, Sandra, a Sumter County resident, mentioned why she prepared her estate planning with YOUR Humane Society SPCA as a beneficiary. “I included YOUR Humane Society SPCA in my will because, having adopted my dog from them, I have witnessed their compassion and dedication first hand. I support their mission to provide a no-kill shelter and other vital services. I also recognize the urgent need for those services in our community. I can give donations now to help and by giving through my will, I can help assure that those services continue into the future.” Contributions to our nonprofit shelter will assist us in our lifesaving work.

Print our guidelines for valuable information as you prepare your will and planned giving. Provide them to your independent financial and legal counsel to execute wills, trusts, contracts or other agreements. If you want to help save lives by “Leaving a Legacy of Compassion,” please contact YOUR Humane Society SPCA at 352-793-9117 to request a mailed copy.


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