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All My Children Wear Fur Coats -
How to Leave a Legacy for Your Pet

Chapter Overview

By Peggy R. Hoyt JD, MBA, B.C.S.*
*Florida Board Certified in Wills, Trusts and Estates
©2002 -2010 (all rights reserved)


Chapter One: Pet Ownership in America

  • Informative statitstics about pet ownership in America today
  • The importance of estate planning to create a legacy for your pet

Chapter Two: Planning for Your Pet’s Future

  • Three ways to create a Written Action Plan to protect your pets if something happens to you
  • How to make more-than-sure someone will love and care for your pet, if you become incapacitated or die
  • Problems with traditional estate planning
  • Utilizing the Estate Plannning Pyramid to plan and protect your entire estate
  • Four types of change that create problems for estate plans
  • The Estate Planning Solution
  • Four easy steps to create an estate plan that works
  • The importance of the team approach
  • Four types of change that create problems for estate plans
  • Selecting and engaging pet caregivers for the long-term care of your pet
  • What your pet estate plan should include, from the health history of your pet to appropriate veterinary contacts…and much more
  • Step-by-step instructions on how to create an estate plan that includes your pets
  • Using decals and pet alert cards to prepare for dire emergencies
  • Utilizing the Estate Planning Pyramid™ to plan for and protect your entire estate
  • Three steps that ensure your estate plan will care for all of your loved ones – especially your pets

Chapter Three: Your Pets and Disasters

  • Creating an evacuation plan to protect your pets
  • Alternatives and resources to evacuating with your pets
  • Addressing the special needs for horses and large animals

Chapter Four: Planning for Disability

  • Did you know?  A will provides no protection for your pets in the event of disability
  • Techniques to plan for disability - don't run the risk that your pet is not protected
  • Avoiding guardianship and the perils of guardianships for pets
  • Understanding Powers of Attorney for decision making
  • Six things you must know about Powers of Attorney for maximum effectiveness
  • The difference between Financial Powers of Attorney and Healthcare Directives - why you need both
  • What you need to know about Living Wills - they aren't living and they aren't wills
  • Health Information Portability and Accountabilitiy Act (HIPAA) - its importance in your estate plan
  • Safekeeping your disability directives
  • Preneed Guardian Declarations - can they protect you?
  • Using Trusts to avoid guardianship and protect your pets

Chapter Five: Planning for Death

  • Wills vs. Trusts - an age old dilemma
  • Estate planning challenges - understanding the importance of title in creating plans that work
  • Understand the pitfalls of both wills and trusts
  • Appropriate ways to use lifetime gifts, testamentary gifts, charitable trusts…unique ways to create an enduring legacy for your pet
  • How a charitable remainder trust benefits those you love as well as your favorite charities
  • Learn the tax implications and consequences of your decision to use a charitable trust as part of your legacy plan
  • How private foundations can help you create an immortal legacy for your pet
  • Using a supporting organization to leave a hallmark legacy for your pet
  • How charitable gift annuities can provide increased income for you and your pet during your lifetime

Chapter Six: Estate Planning and Pets

  • Why a pet cannot inherit your estate
  • Power of Attorney provisions for protecting your pets in the event of disability
  • Why trusts can provide protection for a pet not available with a will
  • Ways to provide for your pets - outright distibution or trusts for added protection
  • Trusts and pets - an ongoing challenge.  The laws are in a state of change
  • Federal obstacles to creating a plan for your pet
  • Figuring out what to do with your money - what's the best way to leave money for your pet?
  • The importance of written instructions

Chapter Seven: Planning for Your Pet

  • Creating a rock solid estate plan in the event of your disability or death
  • The size of your estate is immaterial, your desire to provide a comprehensive estate plan and legacy for your pet is paramount
  • Creating a Pet Plan that works!
  • Your Pet Planning Partners - how to identify them
  • Investing in your estate plan
  • Pet Plan design components - making the most of your Pet Plan
  • Distributing assets for your pets - who's in charge of the money?
  • People who are critical to protecting your pets
  • Trustees and other fiduciaries - what's a fiduciary?
  • Pet Caregivers - the importance of identifying more than one
  • Your Animal Care Panel - the people you trust for the pet you love
  • Who gets what's left - Remainder Beneficiaries and avoiding future lawsuits
  • Other important issues - identifying your pet, pet inspections
  • Special considerations for pets with long lives
  • Finding an attorney who understands estate planning and the sensitive issues that surround pet involvement in estate planning
  • Why you absolutely need an attorney to help you create an estate plan
  • Key questions you must ask your estate planning attorney during your first visit and what to expect from him or her
  • What you should do about your estate plan if you think you cannot afford an attorney
  • Tapping into the National Network of Estate Planning Attorneys puts you in touch with over 1,000 nationally recognized estate planning attorneys

Chapter Eight: Animal Care Organizations

  • Selecting the righ long-term care facility is critical to the future well-being of your pet
  • Knowing which organizations actually care for your pet and which provide "foster homes"
  • Taking a careful look at how perpetual care organizations determine costs and benefits
  • Making certain your funds will not run out to care for your pet during your pet's lifetime
  • Discover how local veterinary colleges can be enlisted as a practical, low-cost future long term care alternative for your pet
  • An exhaustive checklist for selecting a long-term care facility fo ryour pet - from human interaction levels to facility care options - you must select the right facility to feel secure
  • Potential dangerous pitfalls and sound legal guidelines to consdier when entering into a perpetual care contract with a long-term care provider
  • Animal Charities - selecting the right one
  • Charity Evaluation Checklist
  • Charitable organization resources
  • Finding the right way for you to remember your pet
  • Learn the most meaningful ways to make a special statement about your love for your pet
  • Ways to find comfort – useful ideas that can make you feel your departed pet is close and safe
  • Pet burial and cremation options – choosing the right one for you may help you cope better after the loss of your pet – how choosing the wrong one may make things worse for you

Chapter Nine: Charitable Giving Techniques

  • The importance and benefits of lifetime gifts
  • Making testamentary gifts count
  • An introduction to charitable trusts
  • Charitable Remainder Trusts
  • Charitable Lead Trusts
  • Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts (Wealth Replacement Trusts)
  • Private (Family) Foundations
  • Supporting Organizations
  • Donor Advised Funds
  • Pooled Income Funds
  • Charitable Gift Annuities
  • Remainder Pet Trusts - is this possible?
  • Tax Implications - considering the tax implications
  • Trust Administration - can you trust your trust?

Chapter Ten: Attorneys, Fiduciaries and Other Scary People

  • Choosing an Estate Planning Attorney
  • What is an attorney? 
  • Why you need an attorney and shouldn't do this on your own
  • Questions for interviewing attorney candidates
  • Getting the most out of your relationship with your attorney
  • Other trusted professionals - corporate trustees,

Chapter Eleven: Ways to Memorializ Your Pet

  • Eight unique ways to remember your special pet
  • Pet burial and cremation

Chapter Twelve:  Pet Loss and Grief

  • Cathartic ways to say good-bye to your pet – how to gain maximum closure through this painful time
  • Understanding what your pet experiences during euthanasia can helps you cope
  • The four stages of grief and dealing with the deep sense of pain that accompanies the loss of your pet
  • Remembering your pet and accepting death as a part of the cycle of life
  • The four vital steps for coping with the loss of your pet
  • Should a healthy pet ever be euthanized? How to deal with this difficult decision...
  • Making the euthanasia decision - the most difficult decision you may ever face - knowing when it is timeWhat to say to family and friends – especially young children – about the death of a pet

Chapter Thirteen: Pet Memories and Stories

  • Interesting stories and quotes that inspire, touch the soul and bring comfort

Legacy Planning Partners, LLC

254 Plaza Drive
Oviedo, FL 32765
407-977-8080 - phone
407-977-8078 - fax