Another recent trend in animal law is the enactment of state statutes specifically authorizing trusts for animals. Prior to the enactment of these statutes, significant obstacles existed in many states when attempting to establish valid, enforceable trusts for pets and other animals. In some instances, states have enacted limited provisions to authorize animal trusts. Other states have completely updated their Wills and Trusts statutes by enacting provisions of the Uniform Trust Code (UTC). Under section 408 of the UTC, a trust for the care of an animal is specifically allowed along with the authorization for courts to appoint someone to enforce the trust. The pet trust provision in the UTC, section 408, was adopted in 2000.

The Uniform Probate Code (UPC) began to recognize “pet trusts” in 1990 and the relevant section, 2-907, was amended in 1993.

For additional information on pet trust statutes, visit the website of Professor Gerry W. Beyer from Texas Tech University School of Law:

http://www.professorbeyer.com/Articles/Animal_Statutes.htm

Dates below refer to the effective date of the pet trust provision.

STATES WHICH HAVE ADOPTED
UNIFORM TRUST CODE § 408

  • Alabama (2007)
  • Arkansas (2005)
  • District of Columbia (2004)
  • Florida (2007)
  • Kansas (2003)
  • Maine (2005)
  • Missouri (2004)
  • Nebraska (2005)
  • New Hampshire (2004)
  • New Mexico (2003)
  • North Dakota (2007)
  • Ohio (2007)
  • Oregon (2006)
  • Pennsylvania (2006)
  • South Carolina (2006)
  • Tennessee (2004)
  • Vermont (2009)
  • Virginia (2006)
  • Wyoming (2003)

STATES WHICH HAVE ADOPTED
UNIFORM PROBATE CODE § 2-907

  • Alaska (1996)
  • Arizona (1995)
  • Colorado (1995)
  • Hawaii (2005)
  • Illinois (2005)
  • Michigan (2000)
  • Montana (effective 1993, amended 1995)
  • North Carolina (1995)
  • South Dakota (2006)
  • Utah (effective 1998, amended 2003)
  • Texas (2006)

STATES WHICH HAVE ADOPTED
OTHER PET TRUST PROVISIONS

  • California (2008)
  • Connecticut (2009)
  • Deleware (2008)
  • Florida (2002)
  • Idaho (2005)
  • Indiana (2005)
  • Iowa (2000)
  • Maryland (2009)
  • Nevada (2001)
  • New Jersey (2001)
  • New York (1996)
  • Rhode Island (2005)
  • Texas (2006)
  • Washington (2001)

HONORARY PET TRUSTS

  • Wisconsin (1969)