Tuesday, March 18, 2008

New class of hairy lawsuits asserts pets' rights

(This article from North Carolina's The News and Observer courtesy of one of my former interns-extraordinaire [and animal lawyer-to-be], Joe Mustian. Thanks for the heads-up Joe and the attorney profiled in the article is going to have some tough competition pretty soon!)

RALEIGH - Fido is getting a new name -- several, in fact: "plaintiff," "trustee," "beneficiary" and even "defendant."

Dogs, cats and creatures of all sorts are being redefined in an emerging area of legal practice known as animal law. Once considered mere property, animals are being invested with legal standing as they're increasingly being named as partial beneficiaries of estates, subjects of lawsuits and victims of abuse.

As animals rise in the law, so does the profile of animal lawyers, or lawyers who practice animal law.

Ninety-two of the 196 law schools in the country approved by the American Bar Association now offer courses on animal law, up from the nine that offered classes in 2000, according to the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

"You're seeing this real snowball effect," said Pamela Alexander, director of the defense fund's animal law section.

Read the rest of the article here....

1 comment:

Billy said...

Wow, that's wonderful news! Thanks for sharing.