Delaware House Bill 31 passed the House of Representatives and is now awaiting action in the Senate Judiciary Committee:
House Bill No. 31The proposed bill would allow Delawareans to establish trusts for the benefit of their pets, so that the pets may be cared for after the death of the pet owners. Delaware Lawyers have previously had to draft Trust and Will provisions that leave funds to humans, with conditions and with the hope that the humans would care for the pets.
An Act to Amend Title 12 of the Delaware Code Relating to Trusts.
Be it Enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware:
Section 1. Amend Title 12 of the Delaware Code by enacting as a new "sec. 3593. Caretaker Trusts For Pets." and "sec. 3594 Definitions." as follows:
"Sec. 3593. Caretaker Trusts For Pets.
Purpose. It is hereby established under Delaware law that persons can leave funds in a ‘Caretaker Trust’ for the care of pets similar to other trusts under Delaware law subject to the same rules, regulations and reporting requirements as other trusts.
Sec. 3594. Definitions.
‘Caretaker Trust’. A type of Trust that provides for the care of a pet or pets.
‘Caretaker Trustee’. A person or entity that serves as the principal director of the trust, including trust companies, financial institutions, educational institutions, and any other corporations permitted under Delaware law to serve as trustee for a trust.".
This establishes "Caretaker Trusts For Pets" as a type of Trust permitted under Delaware law
If passed, the pet owners will be able to make more clear and enforceable trust provisions, naming their pets and appointing a "caretaker". This will be a nice step forward in enabling residents to plan for the care of their pets.