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What Happens to My Pets After a Divorce?

Pets are a beloved part of any family. Indeed, many married couples cherish their pets as much as they would their own children. However, the law doesn’t recognize pets the same as children. Instead, pets are classified as property under Florida law. Should a married couple decide to divorce, they may be forced to prove ownership in order to claim possession of their pets. Here are a few things to remember in order to control what happens to your pets after a divorce.

Provide Proof of Pet Ownership

Because pets are considered property, you must provide evidence, if possible, that you got your pet or received it as a gift before or outside of your marriage. To assist you in proving ownership of your pet, you can submit documentation such as:

  • The bill of sale for when you bought your pet
  • A veterinarian bill for your pet dated before your marriage
  • Pet supply receipts for items purchased before your wedding
  • Photographic proof that you solely-owned or received the pet as a gift

Establish Your Pet as an Asset

Sometimes pets can be considered valuable assets during divorce proceedings. If your pet provides you with a source of income through breeding, shows, or litters, then you could be granted ownership.

Co-Share Your Pet

Unfortunately, the court does not grant custody or time-sharing plans with regards to animals and cannot provide you with visitation rights to see your pet. However, if a divorcing couple wishes to work out a pet-sharing schedule, then that is completely up to them. Co-sharing can often be handled by a mediator who will determine the best interests of your pet.

Fight for Your Furry Friends

If the other party claims ownership of the pet and you cannot negotiate a deal to co-share, then there is a chance that you may lose your pet in a divorce. To ensure you acquire your pet when the divorce is over, you’ll need the help of an experienced divorce attorney to fight on your behalf.

If you are considering a divorce and need help fighting for your pet or other assets in court, then contact the expert divorce attorneys here at the BCN Law Firm in Clermont. We can help you protect your rights and possessions during each stage of the divorce process. Contact BCN Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation and speak with an experienced Clermont divorce attorney today.