While many consider their pets part of the family, the sad fact is that Connecticut law considers them property. This is why divorce can include the heartbreaking decision about which spouse gets the dog. Some couples can work out a kind of custody arrangement, but many end up in court battling for ownership of the pet. To avoid this complex family law dispute, more couples are drafting pet prenuptial agreements prior to getting married.

For many couples, a dog or cat is like a child. They may bring the pet into their home before or instead of having children. However, family courts will usually not consider the pet beyond its monetary value. With a pet prenuptial agreement, couples are deciding from the beginning of their marriages who will care for the animal, who will take responsibility for the animal’s expenses and how they will make decisions about the end of the pet’s life if they should every divorce.

Pet prenuptial agreements are another example of how flexible a marital contract can be. While it may be awkward to discuss the division of furniture and dishes before getting married, couples seem more willing to have this talk when the well-being of their pets are in question. The alternative may be having a judge make the decision, which can be difficult for the animal as well as for the pet parents.

Prenuptial agreements are an element of family law that many people misunderstand. Nevertheless, there are numerous situations in which such an agreement may benefit a couple preparing to marry. Those who wish to learn more about whether a prenuptial agreement is appropriate for their situation may contact a Connecticut attorney who can answer their questions and guide them in making prudent decisions to protect their rights.