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Pet estate planning: What you need to know

There is always the chance that your pet could outlive you. For some, this is cause for concern. They don't want to worry that their pet will not be taken care of if they pass on.

With the right approach to pet estate planning, you never have to concern yourself with this. Instead, you can take steps now to ensure that your pet will always be in good hands, even after you are gone.

Here are a few tips to follow:

-- Find a replacement. Who will take care of your pet if you pass on? This is the most important question to answer, as you need to trust that this person is willing to take on the responsibility.

-- Set aside money to cover future expenses. It is much easier to find a replacement when you have money set aside for your pet's care, such as supplies and visits to the vet.

-- Include a pet provision in your will. This may not be something everybody does, but you should keep it in mind when creating your will. This will ensure that there is no gray area in regards to what should happen to your pet in the event of your death.

There is a lot to learn about pet estate planning. It doesn't matter what type of pet you have, you need to think about what would happen to it should you pass on first. This may not be the most important aspect of your estate plan, but it will go a long way in giving you greater peace of mind.

Source: The Humane Society of the United States, "Backup Plan," accessed June 11, 2015

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