Here's a list of Frequently Asked Questions. If you have a question we have not answered here, feel free to get in touch with us.
+ Should I set up a Pet Trust?
Of course. Give your pets a life of safety so they’ll never end up an orphan. You can leave as much money as you want or none in the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust. Even if you think family members may dispute your wishes, a well-written pet trust wins against all court battles. It confirms ownership and you get to choose who will take care of your animals.
+ Why should I make a Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust?
The Pet Protection Agreement pet trust ensures continuing care for your pets if you pass away or become unable to take care of them in your lifetime. It's a set of instructions for your appointed pet guardian to follow and ensures that your pets receive the standard of care that they're accustomed to.
Without a Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust, a judge can decide where your pets go. This could take months, even years, and could have a devastating impact on your pets.
+ Do I need an attorney to create a Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust
No. You do not need an attorney to prepare this Agreement. We make it easy to create a Pet Protection Agreement® online. However, if you are unsure about your needs and require legal advice for your specific circumstances, we recommend that you reach out to Rachel Hirschfeld.
+ What are the differences between the three different pet trusts?
+ Who should I name as the pet guardian?
Since the pet guardian will own your pets when you are unable to care for them you should name someone you trust and believe will do a good job and follow your instructions. You can name a person or an organization.
When you name an organization you are also giving them the power to enforce the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust.
+ What if I don't know anyone and do not have a family member to name as the pet guardian?
Many are in this position, including me. Here are a few suggestions. You can ask your veterinarian if she or he would agree to be the pet guardian and then be in charge of finding the pets a home. You can ask your local shelter or rescue owner if they would agree to be the pet guardian and then find the pets a home. Maybe your postman likes your dogs! In these cases you are choosing who will take care of them rather than leaving this to the court.
+ Is the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust valid in Canada?
The Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust is valid in all of Canada and the rest of the world. Both the pet guardian and the pet owner as well as the notary and witnesses must sign.
+ How many Pet Protection Agreements® pet trusts do I need for my 3 or 4 or 10 pets?
You only need one Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust for all your pets. One Agreement protects unlimited animals for one pet guardian. If, however, you have one or more pets who will go to another pet guardian, then you need to complete a separate Agreement. One Pet Protection Agreement per pet guardian, not per pet. But please remember, both the pet guardian and the pet owner as well as the notary and witnesses must sign.
+ If I buy the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust does this include a review by a lawyer?
Anything you write can not invalidate the Pet Protection Agreement. You can not make a mistake that would affect it. The legal part of it is written where you can not change it.
+ How much money should I leave?
You can leave as much money as you want or none at all in the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust. Treat it like you would if you were leaving your child to your sister. Some may need the money and some don't. The average amount left is about $25,000.00 which can be money or other property, like a house.
Leaving money for your pets' care is optional. However, if you do decide to leave funds, consider these factors:
- How many pets are included
- How long they are expected to live
- Compensation for the pet guardian
+ Does my Bank need a Social Security number or Tax ID number for the funds I am leaving to care for my pets?
You can open an account in the bank with your pet guardian as a co-signer or signer and use your regular bank to open the account. The account can be under your SS #.
If you want to get complicated, then you can hire an attorney to write a trust for you and transfer funds into it using. I do not think that is needed.
+ After all the animals pass away, what happens to the funds?
Once all your pets have passed away, remaining funds go to the beneficiaries you have named.
Follow my instructions and you will lock out all adversaries such as courts, lawyers, family members and others. You may leave assets to animal shelters or rescues, friends, family, cancer charities, or even the local fire department down the street.
+ What are Beneficiaries?
Beneficiaries can be people or businesses or charities such as shelters or museums.
If you are leaving funds (property, money, insurance funds, stocks, art - anything) then there may be some left over after all your animals pass. That left over will have to go somewhere. Where it goes is to the "beneficiaries."
+ Is there a trustee in the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust?
No. The pet guardian is in charge of the pets. A pet guardian can be in charge of the funds you leave if you wish. However, if you want a different person to be in charge of just the funds then you can choose to name a distribution representative.
+ I took out a life insurance policy to fund this plan. Do you know if I can name "Pet Protection Plan" as the beneficiary?
Yes you can do that. You would probably name the pet guardian or the distribution representative. If you ever change who the pet guardian or the distribution representative is in the Agreement then remember to rename the beneficiary in the insurance policy.
+ What makes the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust legal?
The Pet Protection Agreement® is a Will, a Trust, and a Contract all at the same time. It overrides anything written prior.
It overrides anything written except a new Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust. The Agreement is a contractual agreement between the pet owner and the pet guardian. The legalese at the end of the Agreement as well as the signature of both parties, notary and witnesses makes it legal and valid in all states.
+ What other legal documents are included in the Pet Protection Agreement® pet trust?
The Agreement includes a limited Health Care Proxy and Power of Attorney. If you are injured or in an accident, the Health Care Proxy allows the pet guardian to get a letter from the doctor and hospitatl proving that you are unable to care for your animals. If you left funds, the pet guardian can get money if the pets need care.
+ What are the Hospital Forms?
When the pet owner is in the hospital or other facility and needs someone to gain entry into their home to care for their pets, these Hospital Forms legally permit entry to the home or wherever the pets are, allow care for the pets, and promise return of the pets when the pet owner recovers and can care for the animals.
+ Why do we need the hospital forms?
These Hospital Forms legally permit entry, care and return of your pets.
Prior to your hospital stay give these forms out to anyone you think may be helpful. Upon arrival at the hospital or other facility, you should give one to a facility worker.
Are there animals, special needs or young children, elderly, or disabled people you are leaving behind who need care? If you answer yes, then child services or elder authorities would be called to administer care for them, but there is nothing in place to do that for your animals.
If you have a question, feel free to get in touch with us.