Who Handles My Digital Assets After I Pass Away?
In 2021, most of our lives revolve around the digital world. We use the internet and all of its resources for entertainment, social interaction, financial transactions, and much more. Even if you do not have cryptocurrency accounts, you still likely have some type of digital assets, such as social media accounts, email accounts, and cloud-based photo albums, among other things.
So, what happens to your digital assets if you pass away? You might have never considered it, or you might not think it is an important matter to consider at length. However, digital assets have become an important part of estate planning, and you should always discuss this matter with an experienced Santa Ana estate planning attorney.
Estate Planning for Digital Assets
The first thing you will need to do is determine which digital assets you have. Taking careful inventory is key to know how to best plan for the future of these assets. Once you have your list of accounts and passwords for all your digital assets, you might want to use a password manager or otherwise store this information in a safe and secure place for easier estate planning.
You might think that if you pass along your passwords to your beneficiaries or executor, your job is done. However, when it comes to estate planning for digital assets, it can be more complicated than simply sharing your passwords. You also need to decide what will happen to these assets after your death.
Some online platforms allow you to specify what will happen if you pass away – for example:
- Facebook allows you to instruct whether you want them to delete your account or allow a designated third party to have limited control over your profile.
- Google permits you to pass along access to your accounts to a third party if your accounts are inactive for a period of time.
You must take action to put these plans into place. Otherwise, your accounts might simply remain dormant – and inaccessible to anyone else – until they are dilated at some point.
Other services do not have options for making sure that your account transfers to the right person if you pass away. In this situation, you can use estate planning tools to plan for your digital assets. You can use:
- A power of attorney to give someone control of your digital assets should you become incapacitated
- A will or trust to pass along ownership of your digital assets once you pass away
Through these documents, you can ensure that your digital assets are in the right hands and are accessible in the proper manner.
Speak with a Santa Ana Estate Planning Lawyer Today
Many people forget to consider what will happen to their digital assets, though this is a critical part of modern-day estate planning. A Santa Ana estate planning attorney at the Law Offices of Roshni T. Desai can help, so please call 714.694.1200 or contact us online for an appointment.