Family Matters Law Group P.A.
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Pet Law Archives

Pet Law and Protecting your Pet

Pet Law is evolving in Florida but for now, pets are considered property in Florida. Because of this they are treated like any other property. Which means, if you are married, they will be allocated to one of you in the divorce just like the couch, or TV. If you are not married and you are living together and split you are going to have a whole lot of problems when you split because there is no real standard for splitting ANY assets, particularly pets. In the end we have no current pet law in place that allows for "shared custody", "visitation" or "pet support". There is no equivalent of child support for pets. But these are all things that you can contract with your partner for. You can enter into an agreement that determines a schedule for joint ownership, or that determines one owner to be the sole owner and also make provisions for payments of bills and costs if you are going to "share custody". It becomes an enforceable contract, like any other that you can pursue in Court if not followed. These are thing that Judges lack the ability to do in divorce court or civil court (in the event you are not married). Even if the dog is registered, or was purchased with papers, if you are married, and you purchased the pet during the marriage the pet is likely considered a marital asset and will be treated as joint property whether you are the "true" owner or not. Also, many people who treat their pets as family set up pet trust to provide for their pets needs after their death. This is critical as we see so many instances where pets end up in shelters after an owners death because relatives are unable to care for them. Solaris law group can help with Pet Law issue,  including pet pre-nups and pet trusts. Call us for a free consult.

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