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Ways to Protect Animals: National Estate Planning Awareness Week



Estate plans are a powerful tool for change.

Happy National Estate Planning Awareness Week (NEPAW)! NEPAW is an observance dedicated to sharing the importance of estate planning. Estate plans are a powerful tool for change; however, it's been found that a significant portion of Americans do not have a will or an estate plan in place. We have partnered with FreeWill to make it easier than ever to protect all you care about using our free estate planning tool.

The Power of Estate Planning

Estate planning is a comprehensive approach to ensuring your wishes are respected in various circumstances, providing protection and support to loved ones, and potentially leaving a lasting legacy. Let’s explore some key reasons why estate planning is essential.

Control Over Assets: An estate plan ensures that your assets are distributed according to your wishes. Additionally, proper estate planning can reduce the amount of estate tax that might be owed and can help to avoid or simplify the legal process.

Protect and Provide for Loved Ones: An estate plan allows you to designate guardians for minor children, ensure loved ones are physically and financially cared for, and offer peace of mind to family members.

Philanthropic Giving: An estate plan allows you to leave a legacy by donating assets to charitable organizations or causes you care about. Learn more about World Animal Protection’s Legacy Society.

Peace of Mind: Knowing that you have a plan in place to care for your loved ones and distribute your assets according to your wishes provides peace of mind and helps prevent potential disputes among family members.

Protect Your Companion Animals  

Estate planning is essential for ensuring your companion animals continue to receive the care, security, and provisions they need. Let’s explore how estate planning can be crucial for people with companion animals.

Guaranteeing Care: An estate plan can ensure a clear plan is in place for animal companions to be well cared for.

Choosing the Right Caretaker: Through estate planning, a trusted person can be designated to take care of companion animals, providing peace of mind.

Financial Support: Funds can be set aside specifically for animal care. Some jurisdictions allow for the creation of trusts for companion animals. These legal entities provide funds for care and designate a trustee who ensures the money is used for the animal’s benefit.

Detailed Care Instructions: Within estate planning documents, specific care instructions, from the preferred type of food to medical history and veterinarian contact information, can be provided.

Prepare for the Unpredictable 

It is a common misconception that estate planning is not necessary for young people. Estate planning, even in a basic form, offers a way to ensure that one's wishes are respected and that loved ones are protected. Let’s explore why young people should consider estate planning.

Asset Distribution: Even if one does not have significant assets, they might have sentimental items or specific wishes about how to distribute what they own. Without an estate plan, standard legal protocol might not align with personal preferences.

Digital Assets: Digital assets, such as online accounts, social media profiles, digital currencies, and other virtual properties are often overlooked. Estate planning can provide directions on how to handle these assets.

Liabilities: Estate planning can provide clarity on how financial obligations such as student loans, car loans, or debts should be handled.

Philanthropic Giving: Substantial assets are not required to leave a charitable legacy. No matter the size of the estate, leaving a gift to a charity can contribute to significant change.

You can start your estate planning journey today with our free estate planning tool! If you have already arranged your estate plans and have left a gift to World Animal Protection, we thank you for your incredible generosity and commitment to our mission. Please notify us of your intentions by submitting this brief form.

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