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Monthly Archives: August 2020

PET TRUSTS: How You Can Protect

Ask around and you will frequently find pet owners who will shamelessly admit that they enjoy
their pets more than other people. As pet owners we recognize that the comfort and care need of
our pets may one day extend beyond that which we are able to provide ourselves. Of course, pet
owners only want the best for their dogs, cats, horses, snakes, birds, etc. What happens when we
pass away, become incapacitated or can otherwise no longer care for our pets in the way that
they require?
Prior to 2012, the Massachusetts legislature had not provided an answer to this question, thus
leaving pet owners with no legally enforceable way to ensure that their pets are properly cared
for and maintained after a pet owner passes away or becomes incapacitated. Today,
Massachusetts courts recognize the creation of a trust—a pet trust—for the care and maintenance
of one or more pets for the duration of their lifetime(s). 1
One of the many benefits to establishing a pet trust is to provide pet owners with the peace of
mind that comes with knowing that their pets will be cared for according to their instruction. For
example, the fact that one’s dog only eats a certain type of dog food, or that one’s parrot requires
certain medications or treatment, are important details to incorporate into the trust to ensure that
your animals are cared for properly and in accordance with your wishes and their needs.
Another benefit to the establishment of a pet trust is that you are able to designate funds that will
be for the sole benefit of your animal. You can leave enough money to provide food, shelter, and
other necessities for your pet for the remainder of […]

By |August 11th, 2020|Pet Trusts|0 Comments|


COVID-19 has had an impact on the way we go about our daily lives and has forced us to consider all of the “what if” scenarios we often do not want to think about.  COVID-19 has shown us that it is important to be prepared for all scenarios—including the necessity of having a proper estate plan in place, including, but not limited to, a Last Will & Testament, Health Care Proxy, and Power of Attorney.  Other documents you may wish to have included in your estate plan includes a MOLST form, HIPAA Release, and a Declaration of Homestead, if applicable.  Depending on one’s assets and goals, establishing a Trust may also be ideal as part of an estate plan.

Developing an Estate Plan is important as it identifies what you would like to have happen in the event that you should become incapacitated, unable to make your own decisions, or pass away.  It is more important than ever to develop an Estate Plan.  The United States has had approximately 150,000 confirmed deaths of COVID-19 and over 4.3 million confirmed cases of COVID-19.  If, for whatever reason, you were suddenly hospitalized and unable to make decisions regarding your health and finances, you have no control over who would be making those decisions (some examples: there could be a conflict between your spouse and your parents, or if single, your parents could disagree, your spouse could not be available/able or a person could be appointed that you would not wanting making decisions for you).  Furthermore, any delay in determining who should be making those important decisions could negatively impact your health and finances.

Estate plan documents are especially important during this pandemic as a physician’s […]

Cohen Cleary, P.C.

Cohen Cleary, P.C.