Protecting Your Digital Assets through Estate Planning

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Digital Assets and Estate Planning: Ensuring a Smooth Transition

Our lives are deeply intertwined with online accounts and digital assets in today's digital age. From social media accounts to photo collection and online banking, the digital footprint we leave behind is extensive. However, many overlook the importance of including these digital assets in estate planning.

Failure to address these assets in your estate plan can lead to complications and uncertainties for your loved ones after you pass away.

The Benefits of Including Digital Assets in Estate Planning

The digital age has transformed how we manage our lives, and our digital presence is now an essential aspect of estate planning. Digital assets include everything from online financial accounts and social media profiles to personal documents stored in the cloud.

Incorporating digital assets into your estate plan:

  • Preserves and manages your online presence and digital identity after your passing
  • Ensures your loved ones can access and handle your digital assets according to your wishes
  • Protects your valuable digital assets, such as cryptocurrencies and online financial accounts
  • Minimizes the risk of identity theft and unauthorized access to sensitive information
  • Facilitates a smoother and more organized probate process for your beneficiaries
  • Preserves and passes on cherished memories, photos, and other digital content to future generations
  • Grants you peace of mind, knowing your digital legacy is secure and well-managed

Steps for Inclusion of Digital Assets in Estate Planning

Here are the steps to include your digital assets in your estate plan:

1.   Establish an Inventory

Begin the process by compiling a comprehensive list of your digital assets. Include a detailed inventory of all online accounts, electronic devices, and digital files. Be sure to record account login credentials, security questions, and any instructions you want to convey to your beneficiaries regarding these assets.

2.   Appoint a Digital Executor

Designate a trusted individual as your digital executor. This person will manage and distribute your digital assets based on your wishes. Ensure that your digital executor has the technical knowledge and understanding of your digital footprint to handle these assets efficiently.

3.   Update Your Will and Estate Plan

Integrate your digital asset inventory into your traditional will or living trust. Clearly outline how you want your digital assets to be handled, including the deletion of certain accounts, transfer of ownership, or distribution of digital content. Review regularly to update your estate plan based on any changes.

4.   Consider Digital Asset Protection Services

Several online platforms offer digital asset protection services. These services securely store your login credentials, instructions, and documents related to your digital assets. Utilizing such services ensures that your digital executor gains access to all necessary information when the time comes.

5.   Comply with Privacy Laws

Understand the privacy policies of various online platforms and their procedures for handling deceased users' accounts. Some platforms have specific policies for transferring or deleting accounts upon the account holder's death. Familiarize yourself with these policies and provide appropriate instructions in your estate plan.

6.   Secure Your Digital Assets

Incorporate cybersecurity measures into your estate planning. Use unique passwords for every account, and consider implementing two-factor authentication where possible. Store your digital asset inventory and important access information in a secure location, such as a password-protected document or a physical safe.

It is best to seek assistance from a professional estate planning attorney to help you create a proper estate plan.

Consult Professional Estate Planning Attorneys at Evans Case

As technology continues to shape our lives, addressing digital assets in estate planning has become highly important. Failure to account for these assets can lead to challenges and delays for your loved ones during a difficult time.

Don't let your digital assets become a burden by taking proactive steps now to secure their proper management and preservation for future generations. Our experienced Denver estate planning attorneys can guide you through this process, leaving a meaningful and organized digital legacy behind.

Get in touch to book an initial evaluation.

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