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It is often said that our pets are part of our family, but many pet owners forget to make sure appropriate provisions are in place for when they pass away and leave their furry friends behind.

Although we may consider our pets as family, in the eyes of the law, they are actually considered as personal possessions, like a car or a piece of furniture, and so whilst it is not possible to leave a bequest to an animal under a Will, pets can be left to someone with provisions that they are taken care of.

The first consideration is who is going to be best placed to look after your pet. You may have no problems with your infirm cat but Uncle Fred may not be so pleased. So whilst the simplest option is to gift your animal to a friend or family member, there is a risk they may decline and so it is always advisable to discuss this with them beforehand.

An alternative it to leave your pet to charity with the request that they find it a new home. Organisations such as the RSPCA and the Dogs Trust offer such services.

Looking after animals is not cheap and so many will want to consider also leaving a cash lump sum to whoever takes your pet, with the request that such monies are used towards the animals benefit.

Without a pet clause in place, there is no plan in place to care for your beloved pet once you pass away. Such clauses require careful drafting to minimise the potential risk of inadequate provision and potential failure. At Ramsdens our highly experienced lawyers can assist with drafting your Will and incorporating a pet provision to ensure that the clauses are enforceable.

If you would like advice on writing your Will, please contact our experienced Private Client team today. Call us on 0800 988 3650, email or text LAW to 67777.