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What will happen to my horses after I die?

by | Jan 30, 2019 | equine and animal law |

After your family and friends, your horses are what you care about the most. The gentle, beautiful creatures that you own mean the world to you, and you want them to have the best lives possible.

However, the future is unpredictable. No one expects that one day they could become ill or experience an accident. But in case this does happen to you, it is crucial to address the care of your horses in your estate plan.

Options for your horses

If your family members do not have experience caring for horses, you may wish to have the animals sold to better homes. In your will, you can stipulate whether you prefer to sell them via private sale or auction. You can also designate the beneficiaries who will receive the money from the sales.

You may also wish to leave a horse to a beneficiary. This way, you know that the animal will go to a trustworthy guardian of your choosing. You can even earmark funds from your estate to pay for the horse’s care.

Planning today can protect your horses tomorrow

When someone dies intestate, the Georgia court system will handle their property and assets. The probate process is long and convoluted, and there is no way to ensure that the court will distribute your assets, including your horses, the way you would have chosen.

Instead, if you do not already have one, create an estate plan. Most people think of estate plans as documents that pass wealth to their family members. In addition to providing for your family members, it can protect your animals. Think of your estate plan as a way to care for your horses as long as they live–even after you are gone.