Digital technologies are now permanently embedded in our everyday lives. As a result, incorporating digital assets into estate plans has become crucial. When creating an estate plan, make sure to include a plan for your online accounts, such as spelled-out instructions on what you want to happen to your email and social media accounts.
You'll also want to figure out who should receive other digital assets with monetary or sentimental value, such as cryptocurrency, balances in mobile payment services like Paypal and Venmo, and other meaningful property that exists in digital form, such as photos. In addition, many digital assets can't be accessed without passwords or—in the case of cryptocurrency—digital wallets and passkeys. Having a system in place for passing on that information is vital to making sure your wishes are carried out.
Technically speaking, digital assets are any “electronic record” that you own, license, or control.
A Plan for Your Digital Assets
How to include online accounts and digital files in your estate plan.
Can My Digital Assets Pass Through My Will?
You can pass some types of digital assets through your will, but most digital assets transfer in other ways, or not at all.
Why Your Executor Needs Access to Digital Assets
After you die, the person wrapping up your affairs may need to access your digital assets.
Access to Online Accounts: Helping Your Executor and Loved Ones
Make sure your executor or another trusted person can find the passwords and usernames for your digital accounts.
How to Add Legacy Contacts to Your Accounts
Give your loved ones access to your Facebook, Apple, and Google data after your death.
Digital Assets and Incapacity Planning
You can use a power of attorney to give a trusted agent authority to manage your digital assets. And if you have serious or specific concerns about what will happen to your digital assets if you become incapacitated, you might also give your agent login information and instructions about what do with your accounts.
The Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (RUFADAA)
RUFADAA helps fiduciaries and tech companies figure out who should have access to a person's digital assets after death.
View More Articles
What Will Happen to My Email Account After I Die?
You can decide, if you make a plan.
What Will Happen to My Yahoo Email Account When I Die?
Yahoo will delete your account after 12 months of inactivity.
What Will Happen to My LinkedIn Account After I Die?
What happens to your LinkedIn account when you die depends on a few things...
What Will Happen to My Snapchat Account When I Die?
Snapchat is not forthcoming about what happens to the accounts of deceased users.
View More Articles