RACHEL HIRSCHFELD IN THE MEDIA
The death of Hollywood actress Carrie Fisher in late 2016 raised an important question for pet-owners: what happens to beloved animals when the owner dies?...
It is a sad story when seniors’ pets show up at an animal shelter: they are often abandoned when their owners become infirm or die without insuring that the pets will be taken in by someone else....
Wills and estate plans are hard enough for most people to fathom. Only 67 percent of Americans over 55 have any sort of written testament, according to FindLaw, a unit of Thomson Reuters.....
Pets are often like members of the family, so you might worry about what will happen if you’re no longer around to take care of them. Setting up a trust to benefit your pet can put your mind at ease, and you don’t have to be a billionaire to do it......
Animal law has become a legal specialty in the past thirty years. While historically animals were purely “property,” a “rights” or “companionship” viewpoint is slowly developing. For example, a few states have enacted legislation or have judicial decisions allowing some financial recovery for owners beyond fair-market-value for the wrongful death of domesticated dogs and cats.
Feathers were ruffled and fur flew when the fate of the dogs owned by two women who contracted the Ebola virus was brought to public attention. In Spain, Excaliber, the dog who belonged to a health care worker who contracted the virus was euthanized despite protests by animal lovers who started a Twitter campaign #salvomosaexcaliber. U.S. officials were a bit more humane; they quarantined Bentley, the King Charles Spaniel belonging to Dallas health care worker Nina Pham.
You just love your darling pet and are sure everyone else does, too. How could they not? So if you were to pass away or no longer be able to care for your pet, a family member or friend would certainly give him or her a good home, right? Wrong unfortunately.
Leaving Thousands of Dollars for the Care of Animals. The number of Americans owning pets is at a record high, and more people are making provisions in their wills to provide for these animals after they're gone.
Some people leave bequests for their pets in wills. But that isn't always the best option because the purpose of a will is to distribute property, and instructions are unenforceable, according to the 2010 book "Petriarch: The Complete Guide to Financial and Legal Planning for a Pet's Continued Care." In other words, Jane might get the house and the cat, but there's nothing in the will that compels her to keep the house maintained or the cat fed.
Animal law among the fastest-growing legal specialties, according to the American Bar Association.
Henry loves fetching his tennis ball and playing tug with his stuffed animals. About 6 years old, the Shih Tzu mix likely has many good years left. In a way, that worries his owner.
If you love your pet like a family member, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has some advice: Consider planning for your pet's future care as though the animal were a real dependent.
Ms. Schiro’s friend, who died after a long illness, had made arrangements for a caregiver to take one of her cats. She assumed her son would take the other. But after her death, the caregiver backed out and the son decided that the additional cats — he already had two — were just too much. In the end, one cat was adopted into a new home, but the other was taken to a shelter.
Hay is for horses – and so, apparently, are trusts.
Advisers say it is important for owners to include their horses in their estate plans, especially since horses can live into their 30s and rack up large expenses. Many horse sanctuaries, where some families have sent horses to retire, are at capacity due to the economic downturn.
The unconditional love that pets offer their owners is something many pet parents would say they can’t live without. Much like a house or a car, pets are considered property under the law. But unlike cash assets, pets can’t be left in the bank when something happens to their owners, and experts say pet owners would be wise to leave provisions for their furry friends in a will or another legal document to ensure uninterrupted care and love.
You don't have to be Leona Helmsley to want the best for your pet after you die. She'd left her dog Trouble $12 million when she passed away in 2007. A judge cut the award to $2 million and awarded some of the money to her grandchildren, but the Maltese still lived a life of luxury until his death in December.
Design legend Alexander McQueen has left 50,000 pounds (about $82,000) to his three dogs, according to details of his will released Tuesday.
The dogs, called Minter, Juice and Callum, according to the Daily Telegraph, received the same amount as each of McQueen’s two housekeepers.
When Soupbone, the beloved dog of New Jersey-based lawyer Rachel Hirschfeld, developed cancer 10 years ago, Hirschfeld spent months finding the best doctors and creating a cancer treatment plan for her pet. “Then one day I thought, If I die, who will know how to give Soupbone the care he needs?” she remembers.
Jenny Smith would do anything for her dog. Go ahead, dare her. In October, Smith, who works for a music school in West Harlem, learned her sweet Sophie (an 8-year-old pit bull-mix rescue) had lymphoma. After depleting $6,000 of her savings toward vet bills, Smith vowed to find a way save the ailing pooch.