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By Jason Carrozza

Hi Everybody,

Happy Wednesday!!! I am so happy that our sidewalks are not covered with snow this morning! This has been such a long and dreadful winter and I know everybody is dying for some warm weather and to get outdoors. Warm weather = play time, not just for us and the kids, but also for our furry family friends. So, this week, we’re going to talk about caring for our animals.

Have you ever asked yourself who is going to care for your animals if you are unable to? Who will keep up with the vet bills, the food, and general maintenance? Who is willing to accept these animals into their homes if needed?

A Pet Trust answers all of these questions and provides continued loving support for your furbaby. The trust is an enforceable, private agreement, with your pet as the beneficiary, the ability to name a Trustee, and the most important of all, the option to name a caretaker.

  • The Massachusetts Pet Trust law was enacted on April 7, 2011 and enables animal owners the opportunity to ensure that their wishes regarding their companion animals are carried out.
  • MSPCA states that between 12 and 27% of the population already includes pets in their estate planning; and
  • In Massachusetts, approximately 33.3% of households in the Commonwealth house either a dog or a cat.

Basically, the Commonwealth is full of animal lovers and we have added legal protections for your lovely companions! Now, some people have gone a bit, shall we say, overboard with the level of assets they have left their animals, you can check these stories out here. However, pet trusts do not need to leave behind a significant amount of assets. They can simply be a way to make sure that your pet follows a proper regimen and routine.

Maybe a pet trust is the best option for you, maybe it’s not. Regardless, make sure you’re thinking about your animals when you are making your final plans. 🙂

Until next time.

About the Author
Jason M. Carrozza is a partner and founder of Family Legal Partners, P.C., previously owning Carrozza Law Office, P.C., which focused on estate planning, probate administration, and business formation. He was recognized as a Massachusetts Rising Star by New England Super Lawyers and Boston Magazine in 2014, 2015, and 2016, an honor given to no more than 5% of attorneys in the state. Graduating magna cum laude from New England Law and ranked 3rd in his class, Jason completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Tampa. He gained experience in civil litigation, divorce, corporate, and insurance defense law firms before opening his practice in 2004. Jason is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts Courts, is a trained family law mediator, and a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. He has volunteered for pro bono panels with Senior Partners For Justice, South Middlesex Legal Services, and the New Center for Legal Advocacy. Dedicated to his community, he has served in various leadership roles including vice president of the Bellingham Business Association and Master of Excelsior Lodge of Massachusetts Freemasons. He teaches Estate Planning Basics at the Tri County Continuing Adult Education program and speaks at estate planning seminars throughout the year. An avid baseball fan and history enthusiast, Jason enjoys outdoor activities and spending time with his family. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katrina, and their children, Zachary and Madelyn.