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Will I Be Able To Keep My Pet After Divorce?

Today, pets are considered a part of life, and the law has acknowledged this. Since pet parents want to keep their animals after a divorce, the law has created a legal process for pet custody, offering some compromises to allow pet parents to keep their pets even after a divorce. 

If you want to gain knowledge about pet custody and how to win it, then contact The Harris Firm for consultation.

How Is Pet Custody Given After Divorce?

Pets are considered personal property or assets of their owners in the eyes of the law. Therefore, the ownership of the pet is given to the spouse after taking into account the various factors. 

Generally, the court divides the assets by community property law and equitable distribution law. Similarly, pets are also given to a spouse based on these laws where, in some states, the court will determine who bought the pet, whether the pet is marital property, etc, to fairly provide the pet ownership to one spouse.

In other states where community property law is enforced, the court will find if the pet is a separate property or a community property. After this, the pet will either be given to one spouse or the court will decide to give the pet’s custody to both owners, where the pet will get an equal amount of time with each pet parent, just like in the child custody division.

Can I Visit My Pet If I Do Not Win The Pet Custody?

If your pet came under separate property, as mentioned above, then you will not get custody. However, you can still visit your pet in rare cases. 

This happens if you and your ex-spouse come to an agreement where you both mention the timely pet visit of the other spouse without pet custody. 

How To Win Pet Custody In Divorce?

If you want to have custody, the best way to do so is by convincing your ex-spouse to allow it. If your spouse agrees to provide you the custody then the court will provide you the pet custody. However, if your spouse does not agree to it, then you can get a mediator’s help to agree. 

So you and your spouse will go through the mediation process to resolve your disputes and draft an agreement mentioning your terms and conditions regarding the pet custody, like the visitation, ownership, alimony, etc. 

If the mediation process does not work, the court will still take the statements of both the pet parents under consideration to find the best interest of the pet and may provide you and your ex-spouse the joint custody of your pet. 

But for this, the court will consider numerous factors like how spacious your home is, if the environment is pet friendly and safe, if the yard space is ideal, etc.

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