There is no dispute; going through a divorce can be difficult. For some, coming home to a wagging tail is just what the doctor ordered on those stressful days.
What happens to your pet in a divorce? As a prior post explained, pets are considered personal property in Delaware. If the owners cannot agree on what to do, the court can award the family pet to one party or the other.
Recognizing that pets are more like family members than furniture for many, Alaska is taking a different approach. Alaska has amended its divorce statutes to consider the well-being of animals and to allow judges to assign joint custody of pets. It also allows the court to include pets in domestic violence protective orders. Pet lovers and advocates are thrilled with this development. We will have to wait and see if other states follow suit.
Leslie Spoltore is a Partner with the law firm Fox Rothschild LLP. Leslie practices in Fox Rothschild’s Wilmington, Delaware office. You can reach Leslie at (302) 622-4203, or firstname.lastname@example.org.