You may have heard about billionaire Leona Helmsley, the famous real estate investor, and her dog Trouble. Upon Mrs. Helmsley's death, Trouble inherited $12 million while certain of her human heirs received much less than that.
I've had some people ask me if leaving an inheritance to a pet is legal. The answer in most states is "yes." But it didn't always used to be that way. Over just the last few decades, nearly every state in the Union, including Utah, has passed laws that allow an individual to leave an inheritance to a pet. Click here to see Utah's pet trust law.
People frequently scoff at such a notion. However, many people have dogs, cats, horses, birds or other family pets with whom they share a strong bond. And the thought of that pet carelessly being tossed into an animal shelter to be adopted by a stranger (or more likely, euthanized) is understandably disturbing.