Russ Cook & Associates, PC
view our Practice areas

What happens to your pet when you die?

Estate planning is a beneficial way of planning where your property and assets will go after you pass away. Many people are unaware that you can also set a trust for your pets.

A pet trust is a legal arrangement that ensures how your pet will be taken care of after you pass away. Similar to other types of trusts, you will set up the trust and name a trustee. The trustee will hold the assets on behalf of your pet and use them to pay for your pet’s expenses. Not only will a pet trust help to ensure what happens to your pet after you die, but it can be a helpful way of preventing your pet from going to someone you might not want them to.

You can provide funds in a pet trust to pay for a variety of expenses. Some of these might include veterinary appointments, grooming care, boarding costs, cremation arrangements, food and other daily expenses.

Additionally, you should address the following elements when creating the trust for your pet, including:

  • When the trust will go into effect
  • Who you would like the trustee to be
  • Who you would like the new owner of your pet to be
  • How often the new owner should confer with the trustee
  • Any routines or care you expect the new owner to continue
  • How much money you would like to leave to take care of your pet
  • Which pet, if multiple, the trust covers

It can also be important to consider what will happen to your pet when they die. In the trust, it might be beneficial to specify any end of life care treatment you want for your pet, as well as what should happen to the remainder of the trust money when your pet passes away. Many people tend to allocate the rest of the funds to charity, other beneficiaries or the new owner of your pet.

As a pet owner, establishing a pet trust can be one of the most important arrangements in your estate plan. In order to make sure your pet receives the best care possible when you pass away, consider seeking legal advice with an experienced estate planning attorney.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

What Our Clients Are Saying About Us

  • Star

    “I recently moved to TN from MN and needed to re-do my trust documents, including a pet trust, to be compliant with TN law, and to find an entity able to act as my trustee. Russ and his staff were able to answer all of my questions quickly and efficiently, and I am comfortable and confident in Russ's representation and that my new documents will act as they are intended, when the time comes. They even put me in touch with a trustee who was involved in the process as well, which was so helpful. This was a big item on my move "to-do" list, and I am so pleased to have it completed!”

    - Kim J.
  • Star

    “We would definitely recommend Russ and any of his Associates. They are all very professional, efficient and well versed in Estate Planning.”

    - Cheryl H.
  • Star

    “Experienced, Knowledgeable, Friendly, Professionals all work here. I'm grateful my parents used this firm to create and maintain their Trust throughout the years. Working with the folks at Russ Cook & Associates, primarily Alex, Debby and Trina made the process comfortable working through Probate, Estate assets and Executing the Trust.”

    - Kemp S.
  • Star

    “Excellent work. They worked with us and never allowed us to miss a deadline. We definitely appreciated their help and would gladly recommend them to anyone seeking help with their estate planning.”

    - Mark S.
  • Star

    “Everyone we came in contact with was wonderful. The staff and Russ treated us like family at all times.”

    - June S.
  • Star

    “Being new to the area having moved from out of state, I was searching for an attorney to assist in elder estate planning for my mother. I was referred to Russ Cook & Associates and found the firm as a whole and Russ Cook himself to be very helpful and accommodating to my needs, as well as experienced and very knowledgeable on the matter I was seeking assistance. I would definitely recommend Russ Cook and Associates.”

    - Brad H.
  • Star

    “Mr. Cook and his staff were phenomenal to work with on my will. They are extremely professional and friendly and made the process seamless. They go above and beyond!”

    - Amber C.
  • Star

    “Russ took the time to answer my questions by email, so that I knew exactly what would take place when I visited his office and his time as well as mine was used efficiently. I appreciated his thoroughness and his professionalism, as well as that of his staff.”

    - JoAnn G.
  • Star

    “Overwhelmingly positive experience.”

    - Stephen W.
  • Star

    “I have been a client for many years. Russ and his staff listen to our concerns, come up with a plan and help us act on it with guidance and professionalism. I'd highly recommend Russ Cook and Associates.”

    - Dr. S. D'Amico
Email Us For A Response

Schedule An Initial Consultation Today

Contact us today to schedule a consultation by sending us an email or by calling 615-200-9117.
We assist clients throughout the Nashville area.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Brand Contact

5141 Virginia Way
Suite 220
Brentwood, TN 37027

Phone: 615-200-9117
Fax: 615-370-5938
Brentwood Law Office Map

Office Hours:
Monday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Tuesday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Thursday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Friday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Summer Hours Office:
8:00 AM - 1:00 PM on Fridays
May 24th Through August 30th

Map Image