Head of Family, Children and Divorce
Trainee Chartered Legal Executive
In the eyes of the law, a pet is considered personal property. As such, it is often a surprise that on divorce or separation the ownership of the pet is key, not who has cared for the pet during the relationship. Where there is a strong attachment to a pet this can create additional stress at an already difficult time.
So, at the start of a relationship, or if you take on responsibility for a pet during a relationship, it is sensible to give advance thought to what would happen to the pet if you split up. Arrangements for existing and future pets can be dealt with as part of a pre-nuptial agreement or a cohabitation agreement. Alternatively, you could agree a standalone “pet-nup” or other written agreement about your pets to clarify ownership, agree arrangements for the pet during the relationship and to give some certainty as to what would happen if you split up.
To discuss a pet-nup please contact a member of Raworths family law team.