Do you decide to split up with your spouse? If you are a pet parent, you may need to shell out the money for not just your ex, but your pet too! There is a growing trend that the maintenance amount now includes the maintenance of the dog or cat. And it’s not a small sum either! Couples who split up charge a fairly high amount for their well-coiffed pets. Divorce attorney Siddhartha Shah, who has dealt with some of these cases, confirms: “Yes, pet maintenance requests are definitely on the rise now. In fact, when pets are at the center of the situation, it’s actually like a tug of war, just like it would be with custody issues – one person says, “I paid for the pet with the credit card so it should be mine” during the another says: “I have raised it, so it must stay with me”. Since the pet is viewed as a child, many emotions are involved. And sometimes three pets are involved, adding to the dilemma and battle over the maintenance and upkeep of all three. ”
“I don’t want maintenance for myself, I want maintenance for my pet.”
Samisha Mehta, a business consultant, married for five years and now separated, turned to a lawyer to explain that she did not want a support for herself but for her dog and explains why. She says, “I’m talking about a divorce with my husband. We were married for four years and have now been separated for a few months. We both chose our Labrador Zander because we both wanted him and raised him as puppies. I love him like my child. My whole point is, well, we don’t want to be in each other’s life, but only because we’ve chosen to go our own way, why should the dog suffer? It is not his fault that we are drifting apart, so the cost should be shared as well. My ex disagrees and wants to cut off completely, but my request is that the pet be looked after. Why should my dog suffer from his lifestyle? My ex says all he needs is a meal, but in our happy days we didn’t make our dog just give him food and the basics. He deserved to be given the same life that he always led. I don’t want maintenance on myself, but I want the dog to have the same indulgences that it has always done. ”
Some charge a lump sum, others an advance payment for the next 10 years of a pet’s life
The maintenance amount can also get very high for gourmet food, veterinary clinic trips, care at the animal shelter, doctor’s home visits, etc. But that didn’t frustrate people, says Shah. “Couples ask in advance for an amount between 15,000 and 25,000. They say, “Either pay a lump sum monthly or pay me an annual amount, but this is the pet expense and must be paid for.” I have a customer who said, “The normal average age for a dog is about 14 years. Please pay me the next 10 years to keep the pet.” So people calculate, calculate and calculate maintenance the way they would for themselves. Neither does the law contain anything that could clarify questions like these and the codification for their upkeep and maintenance, but these “inquiries” are definitely made. ”
And what if someone refuses to pay? “Then it becomes a point of contention where one person threatens to take the other to the police station and sue.”
WHAT DOES THE LAW SAY?
According to Shah, there is no clarification in the law for such issues or codifications for pet maintenance and servicing. So what happens when you refuse to pay? “Often a person threatens to take the matter to the police or to the court.”