Get The Help You Need From A Florida Board-Certified Elder Law Specialist

Karl Lagerfeld, Oprah Winfrey included pets in estate plan

Mar 6, 2019 | Estate Planning

Most Florida pet owners adore their furry, four-legged animals. Many see their beloved pets as more than just an animal, though, and instead treat them like just another member of the family. Despite this, pets are often entirely left out of the estate planning process. Here is how a few notable celebrities included their pets in their estate plan.

Famed fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld recently passed away. However, before his death he made sure that his 7-year-old cat Choupette would be well cared for. In a 2018 magazine interview, Lagerfeld discussed his plans to leave a sizable portion of his fortune to Choupette. It is currently believed that the cat will inherit around $300 million.

Oprah Winfrey also made sure to include her pooches in her estate plan. The media mogul has five dogs that she wants to make sure are adequately cared for in the event of her death. She reportedly has $30 million set aside for their care.

Pet care after an owner’s death is a bigger issue than most people think it is. While an owner might have picked out a willing person to take over ownership, does that person have adequate access to the funds needed to care for an animal? Things like veterinary care, food, grooming and more can all quickly add up. Setting aside funds can help ensure that the pet still receives necessary care no matter what.

It is possible to earmark money in a will, and for some people this approach is well-suited. However, what if the person who will take over caring for the animal is a loving and kind person who happens to be not so good with money? A pet trust fund could be a good option in such cases as another individual would be tasked with managing the money on the animal’s behalf. Pet owners in Florida may want to consider their options for including their pet in their estate plan.