Can I include my pet in my prenuptial agreement?

By 2nd September 2021 Family Law No Comments

Prenuptial agreements give couples the option to plan, honestly discuss and start their marriage on the right foot. See it this way: you can get the finances and arrangements out of the way so you can focus on your marriage.

Prenuptial agreements usually focus on marital and community properties, assigning debts to the appropriate spouse, establishing rules for future issues, and documenting any special arrangements between you and your partner. One of these arrangements could also be an agreement on who gets to keep the pet.

Breakups and divorces can be heart-breaking and complicated, especially when there is no prenup agreement and assets must be divided. We know that this topic isn’t the most pleasant to talk about but prenuptial agreements futureproof couples in the case that something happens, making the separation and divorce an easier process.

What will happen to your pet if your relationship breaks down?

During the national lockdowns, we saw many couples adopting pets and creating their cute little families. For most people, pets are loved like another family member, so what happens in the case of a breakup?

Research from Blue Cross shows that four pets are taken in by the charity every week following relationship breakdowns.

 

Without a prenuptial agreement, the law treats your pet as personal property and if a dispute arises, the decision on who keeps the pet will be made by looking into who adopted the pet or who financially provided for the pet. So, the person that gets to keep the pet is not always the best choice for the animal’s welfare.

A pet prenup could help in this situation as the agreement between the two partners has been set out prior to the breakup and the agreement can include details on the ownership and even shared care arrangements.

 

At DMA Law we help our clients plan ahead and provide clarity for the future. We can provide support in all areas of family law, including prenuptial and separation agreements.  Our lawyers recognise that you and your partner will need support through the process, as well as expert legal advice.