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INFOLAWYER
INFOLAWYER, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 55854
Experience:  Licensed attorney helping individuals and businesses
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This is a question regarding animal custody. I live in Miami,

Resolved Question:

This is a question regarding animal custody. I live in Miami, FL, and my partner and I had discussed either purchasing or adopting a dog. During a 3 week internship in NY in July of 2011, I became interested in purchasing an American Bulldog -- it was a spur of the moment decision -- so I called a work colleague who owns an American Bulldog. I asked her to keep me informed if she heard of any American Bulldog puppies for sale. She called me the very next day stating that her husband had seen a American Bulldog puppies for-sale ad at a pet store. Her husband called the number on the ad and visited the home where the puppies were on sale to verify the legitimacy and breeding records of the puppies. She informed me that all was on the up-and-up, so I called my partner and asked him to go see the puppies and choose one for me since the sale price was reasonable. He purchased a puppy and the puppy has been living at my house since the purchase -- my partner does not have a residence where he can keep pets.

Now the relationship between my partner and I has come to an end, and he wants to keep the dog. Though initially he argued that the dog belonged to him, I asked if we could share custody of the dog. He will not agree to shared custody, so I want to keep the dog since he refuses to compromise. I am the dog's primary care-giver, have paid for the majority of the vet bills, the pet food and supplies, and the dog lives with me. The dog is registered under my name at the vet, but my now ex-partner has indicated that he registered the dog under his name solely with the American Kennel Club, even though we had agreed that the dog would have both of our last names.

What are the legal implications or considerations in this case? What rights does he or I have to the dog?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  INFOLAWYER replied 5 years ago.

INFOLAWYER :

Good morning and happy new years

INFOLAWYER :

Usually ownership is determined by who the pet is registered to.

INFOLAWYER :

Had you been married, this is an issue that gets sorted out within divorce proceedings along financial distribution and custody issues, with the parties agreeing or the court determining based on the relationship

INFOLAWYER :

Here, based on all of the facts you mentioned, all of them favor your continued custody given registration, cost layout, and residence to date

INFOLAWYER :

As a compromise, you may wish to allow some visitation, which often reduces over time or ends altogether due to inconvenience.

INFOLAWYER :

If he refuses to compromise, he would be left with nothing based on these facts, and even if he were to try to pursue legal action, which is usually not done given cost, his chances of gaining custody are highly minimal

Expert:  INFOLAWYER replied 5 years ago.
I think the chat function was not working so I am including the answer below. If I can clarify anything, of course ask me.


INFOLAWYER :

Good morning and happy new years

INFOLAWYER :

Usually ownership is determined by who the pet is registered to.

INFOLAWYER :

Had you been married, this is an issue that gets sorted out within divorce proceedings along financial distribution and custody issues, with the parties agreeing or the court determining based on the relationship

INFOLAWYER :

Here, based on all of the facts you mentioned, all of them favor your continued custody given registration, cost layout, and residence to date

INFOLAWYER :

As a compromise, you may wish to allow some visitation, which often reduces over time or ends altogether due to inconvenience.

INFOLAWYER :

If he refuses to compromise, he would be left with nothing based on these facts, and even if he were to try to pursue legal action, which is usually not done given cost, his chances of gaining custody are highly minimal



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