New divorce law setting the trend: Pets as family members

We’ve talked about property, possessions, and assets in regards to the divorce process. Some items are more straightforward than others. It can be argued that California sets the trend in many ways, even when it comes to state law.  A very interesting piece of news came out on divorce law recently.

There is a new law that goes into effect on January 1st, 2019, according to Laura Goldman of Care2, which “changes California’s Family Code to allow courts to assign sole or joint ownership of pets while considering the pet’s well-being. Before a final ruling, costs will also be allowed to order one spouse to provide food, shelter, and medical care for the pet”.

This is a huge change from past laws stating that pets were essentially property and treated on the same basis in the divorce process as lamps, TVs, cars, and other household items. In the case of this new law, California wasn’t the first but was the first major state to do so. Last year in 2017, Alaska changed its own divorce laws to accommodate this new rule. Illinois did the very same this year.

What will this mean for Louisiana? That is a very good question. We won’t know for sure if and/or when this law will take place in Louisiana. One thing is for sure, though: other states will most likely follow suit. We look forward to keeping you up to date on the latest in legal news for the divorce process.