For many, our pets are our family members. When families get divorced, we have laws setting forth the standards and policies for determining a parenting plan for parents and children. But what about pets? How do you navigate sharing custody of family pets?
For many years, the Family Code was silent as to the Court’s authority to issue orders for family pets. Before 2019, many practitioners would not even consider the family pet as an issue to address. But with more couples choosing to delay or forego having children in lieu of animals, the legislature enacted Family Code section 2605.
Family Code section 2605 permits the Court to make orders as to family pets. Under this code section, the Court can not only determine custody of the pet but can also make orders as to which spouse is responsible for providing food, water, shelter, and veterinary care for the animal while the divorce or legal separation proceedings are pending.
If you are considering divorce or are going through a divorce and are concerned with how the proceedings will affect your pet, please reach out to our office to discuss strategies for filing a motion under Family Code section 2605.