In divorce, will you get to keep the family pet? 

On Behalf of | Sep 2, 2022 | Divorce

In a divorce case, people sometimes wonder what’s going to happen to their family pet. They’re concerned about having to figure out a situation in which they can share time with the pet, or they may even be concerned that they’ll never see them again.

This concern is valid for a few reasons, starting with the fact that pets are property under the law. This means that custody situations are not required. If the court is forced to order – if you and your ex can’t come to a solution on your own – then they are going to do so as part of the property division process.

For example, the court could determine that the family dog costs roughly the same amount as the living room furniture set. It’s quite obvious that whoever is given the furniture set is going to be less than pleased, but the court is just looking at the financial values. They’re not considering the emotional value or the connection you have with your pet.

Is the pet even marital property?

The second thing you want to consider is whether or not the pet is marital property to begin with. This largely depends on whether or not you spent marital funds and bought the dog after the two of you tied the knot. If one of you made the purchase beforehand, using your own money, then you may be able to argue that the pet is separate property belonging only to you.

It’s important to get all the details right during a divorce, so be sure you know what steps to take