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When you prepare your finances and your plans for after your death, you want to make sure that everyone you love is provided for in their time of need, and that those who are dependent on you for finances and family connection are cared for once you are gone. In recent years, pet owners have been taking steps to ensure that their beloved dogs, cats, and other household animals are taken care of in their absence, whether due to an extended hospitalization or hospice care stay, or your passing.

Your pet is important to you, and our trust attorneys in Alameda County know that caring for them is a necessity, especially because they cannot care for themselves. One good way to ensure that your beloved pet will be provided for is to establish a pet trust.

Types of Pet Trust

There are two types of pet trusts readily available to pet owners, and both involve setting up a legally enforceable document that will keep your pet in comfort and financially provide for its care. In the establishment of either trust, you will appoint a person—or more than one—to act as trustee, and this person will be responsible for executing your wishes in terms of your pet’s care. The trustee will be in charge of using the funds you have left behind for your pet’s home, care, and medical needs.

The first trust is a testamentary trust, which will be in effect at the time of your death. You can create the trust at any point during your lifetime, and it will list all of the details about your pet—his or her likes, dislikes, favorite toys, routines, and medical information and history.

The second type of trust is a statutory pet trust, which will be established during your lifetime. The statutory pet trust is sanctioned by California’s Probate Code Section 15212, which was recently amended to require a trustee to honor all terms of the trust. The Code also gives a third party the right to initiate court proceedings in the interest of the trust, and also gives the court authority to appoint a new trustee if necessary. The court is able to make any other orders or determinations necessary to uphold the will of the trust owner.

Most pet owners choose to establish a statutory pet trust, because they can act as the trustees while they are still alive, and then leave the care of their pets to a succeeding trustee after their death. With the help of an Alameda County trust attorney, you can make sure that you are always caring for your pet, no matter where you are. You can ensure that your pet’s likes and dislikes are known, and his needs will be met.

Provide for Your Pet Today

A pet trust can help ease your mind about the long-term care your pet will receive for the rest of its life, and at the Evans Law Firm, Inc., our trust attorneys in Alameda County can get the process started for you. If you want to establish a pet trust, contact Ingrid Evans at the Evans Law Firm for a consultation today at 415.441.8669 or online at

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