Many of us now look at our pets as individuals. They are unique creatures with their own personality, likes, and dislikes. Pets make you laugh, frustrate you, anger you, make you proud, and send people through all the other emotions of having children. Unfortunately, this also means that the loss of a family pet can be incredibly painful – sometimes traumatic.
So what happens when a family is suddenly pulled apart by divorce?
In years past this was a simple property dispute. One person was given ownership over the animal. This could be determined in a variety of ways, but it was never an emotional decision. How one felt about the pet, let alone the dog or cat’s interests, was not part of the equation. Times change and, with it, so do our attitudes about how pets are treated in a divorce. In fact, there are laws in the State of California that are specifically designed to protect pets involved in such situations.
Today, couples have many options when it comes to custody of their four-legged friends. From pet-nuptials to joint custody, there are many ways a separated family can keep a connection with their beloved animal. Part of this decision is designed to protect the dog or cat in question from possible abuse. Another part of this decision is to award custody to the family member who provides the most care and will serve the best interests of the pet. In many ways, pet custody reflects child custody in today’s divorce proceedings.
If you're currently going through a divorce or are considering your options and are concerned about pet custody, contact the Law Office of Rick D. Banks today. We can review all possible options and determine the outcome that best serves your needs, as well as the needs of your pet. You can reach us