Can I create a trust for my pet?
Under Texas law, Property Code Section 112.037, you can have a Trust created for the benefit of your pet, whether that’s your beloved Husky or Siamese cat. You name someone you trust who will take care of the pets and receive a certain amount of income from your trust on a monthly or annual basis. The person designated will look after and care for your pets after you have passed away. Once your pet has passed away, the trust ends and the remaining money left goes to your human beneficiaries (normally your children or other family members, aka those less important that your pets).
Section 112.037 reads: TRUST FOR CARE OF ANIMAL. (a) A trust may be created to provide for the care of an animal alive during the settlor’s lifetime.
The Trust can be terminated upon the passing away of your pet. “The trust terminates on the death of the animal or, if the trust is created to provide for the care of more than one animal alive during the settlor’s lifetime, on the death of the last surviving animal.” Section 112.037, Tex. Prop Code.
The life of the trust cannot be tied to the life of the pet, however, but must be tied to either the settlor or a named beneficiary. This is to prevent a violation of the Rule Against Perpetuities, which requires that all title to property vest within 21 years from the end of a designated person’s life.
The good news is you can take care of your entire family, not just the human members of your family. Just make sure you have a professional create the Pet Trust so that Fido and Fluffy don’t get kicked out to the curb and go hungry.
Blaise Regan is a Partner at Regan & Frisbie, PLLC, a law firm focusing on Wills, Trusts, Probate, Contracts, Business Formations (LLC, Corporation, S-Corp Designation), Business Disputes, DTPA claims, and Consumer Litigation.
Regan & Frisbie, PLLC is located at 7160 Preston Road, Suite 100, Plano, Texas 75024.
Comments or questions, feel free to email him at Blaise@RFPlawfirm.com or call him at 469.200.4737.