Though estate planning is important for all adults, it is natural that you would take it more seriously as you begin to reach the latter stages of your life. When your senior years come into focus you will inevitably recognize the fact that elders face specific challenges. This is why it is useful to proceed with the knowledge that retirement planning and estate planning are intimately intertwined. There is more to planning for the future than just preparing your assets for distribution. You also have to address all the eventualities of aging if you want to make sure that you are comprehensive prepared.
One of the health challenges that many elders are confronted with is the possible onset of depression. When you are a widow or widower whose children and grandchildren are independent and perhaps living elsewhere you can become lonely. Because you are retired and no one is relying on you for daily support you may grope for a sense of purpose. This is quite understandable, and one way to be proactive about addressing it would be to purchase or adopt a pet.
A cat or dog can be a best friend for life, providing love, companionship, and a much-needed sense of purpose as you recognize the fact that the animal is relying on you. However, when you bring a pet into the house as a senior citizen the possibility exists that you may predecease the animal. For this reason pet planning is key, and the first step is to find a suitable caretaker. In many cases you may already know someone who is an ideal candidate who already has a relationship with the pet.
Then you also have to finance the pet’s care. One way to do this would be to leave a bequest to the caretaker in your will. Another option would be to create a pet trust, and these are indeed legal in the state of New Jersey. If you would like to take action and include your pet in your estate plan, simply get in touch with an experienced estate planning attorney who will explain your options and guide you in the right direction.