The new legal agreement is being promoted by The Law Society who highlights that 1 in 4 divorces now involve a dispute over pets. To avoid pet custody battles, the pet-nup is a pragmatic approach for pet lovers.
Pet-nuptial agreements have gained in popularity since lock-down. The pandemic saw a boom in pet buying, it’s estimated 3.2 million UK homes got a new pet during the pandemic period.
What is a pet-nup?
The pet-nuptial agreement outlines who would take ownership of the pet, pay vet bills and other expenses in the event of a split. With the cost of living increasing, it’s a real consideration now for separating couples.
How does it legally work at the moment?
In the UK pets are considered possessions, much the same as a car or piece of furniture. This means that in the event of a divorce, a pet goes to whoever can prove they bought it, or one person can buy the other out.
Professor Ralph Sandland, a lecturer in family law told the BBC that he saw no reason that a pet-nuptial agreement shouldn’t hold up in the same way in court as a pre-nuptial agreement. Although not legally binding, a judge is likely to take it strongly into consideration.
Getting a pet-nuptial agreement is pricey, with legal fees costing in the range of £500 to £1250.
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