male and female humans petting a dog

Can You Name Your Pet as a Life Insurance Beneficiary?


The purpose of life insurance is to financially support the policy owners’ human loved ones after they die. As such, even though you may consider your pet a beloved part of the family, Fido cannot be named an official beneficiary. However, there are a few things you can do when purchasing a life insurance policy in Nova Scotia to ensure your pets are taken care of after you’re gone.


Set up a trust

You can control who spends your life insurance payout and how they spend it by setting up a trust fund. Like a will, a trust is a legally binding document, which can be upheld in court.


Be aware that you must set up the trust before purchasing your life insurance policy. You can’t use a life insurance policy to create a new trust.


When creating a trust, you’ll be required to appoint a trustee who’ll allocate your life insurance money according to your wishes. You must also designate a caretaker for your pet in the event of your death.


Provide instructions

Before you die, you must write down how the designated caretaker will handle your pet’s needs. The following information is crucial.


• Identification information, such as microchips, photos and DNA samples
• Details about how to care for your pet, including their diet and medication regime
• How often the trustee must check in on your pet
• How much money the caretaker will receive for the pet and how to spend it
• Instructions for what to do with your pet’s body after it dies


Moreover, you must designate a beneficiary to receive the remainder of the payout when your pet dies.


Communicate your wishes

Before you create a trust and purchase a life insurance policy, you must communicate your wishes to your family members and loved ones.


Ensure the trustee and caretaker agree to their responsibilities. Moreover, make sure your loved ones are aware that a portion, or all, of your life insurance payout, is going to help care for your pets. Effective communication can avoid disagreements after your death.


Life insurance brokers in Nova Scotia

The insurance brokers at Eisenhauer Insurance Inc. can help you find a policy that’ll take care of all your loved ones after you’re gone. Besides life insurance, we specialize in home and auto insurance. Contact us today at one of our two Nova Scotia locations to get a free quote.