Life insurance is often included as part of an estate plan. Pet insurance can also be included as part of your pet estate plan. Pet plans can be created using will provisions, trust agreements or pet protection agreements. Regardless of the method of pet planning you choose, you can incorporate pet insurance for added protection. Pet insurance is a practical way to provide for your pet’s future, as long as you consider the effects it may have on other components of your overall estate plan.
What is pet insurance, exactly?
The primary purpose of pet insurance, like health insurance for pet owners, is to defray the cost of veterinary care. Vet bills can become very expensive, leaving many pet owners either unwilling or unable to pay for veterinary care. With pet insurance, you can pay a monthly premium, running from $10 to $90, depending on the type of policy. The premium also depends on your pet’s breed, age and medical condition. Your pet insurer will pay certain portions of your veterinary bills. Having pet insurance often prevents owner’s from having to make the decision to euthanize a beloved pet, simply because they cannot afford the veterinary bills.
Why type of pet insurance should I get?
As with health insurance, there are various types of pet insurance available. With each type of insurance coverage, there are certain advantages and disadvantages to be considered, when choosing a policy. Of course, some types pet insurance coverage are more affordable than others.
When choosing pet insurance, it is wise to discuss any potential health problems your pet may have with your veterinarian. Some breeds of animals are more likely to develop certain types of health conditions. Knowing what to expect in your pet’s future, will go a long way toward deciding the type of policy that is best suited for your pet, while still staying within your budget.
What happens to pet insurance after my death?
Generally speaking, the goal of a pet plan is to make sure your pet will be cared for after your death or incapacity. A very popular way to do this is to create a pet trust, which allows you set aside sufficient assets to pay for your pet’s care, and any other related expenses.
With pet insurance included, your trustee can be instructed to maintain a sufficient level of insurance coverage for your pet, even after your death. Some clients also choose to give their trustee the power to find better coverage if your pet’s needs change.
What is the first step?
First, always consider the big picture – that means your overall estate plan. The appropriate pet plan should be easily integrated into your existing estate plan, including your pet insurance policy. An experienced estate planning attorney can advise you in determining the type of pet insurance you need and how it can be incorporated into your estate plan.
If you have questions regarding pet insurance, or any other pet estate planning needs, please contact the Schomer Law Group either online or by calling us at (310) 337-7696.
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