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Digital Estate Planning Made Easy

It is easy to forget about digital assets during estate planning. This is despite the fact that many people have digital assets, some with monetary values and other with emotional values. Here are a few ways you can handle your digital assets during estate planning:

List All Your Digital Assets

The first thing you should do is to make a list of all your digital assets. You might think your loved ones know all about these things, but these days people have a serious online presence, and it's easy to forget about one or two things. Don't restrict yourself to your blogs, social media pages or websites – include your cloud storage accounts, emails, digital storage media (such as flash disks and memory cards), and domain names. Making an exhaustive list is the best way to ensure that your executor will be able to access all your digital assets.

Name A Digital Estate Executor

You need a digital executor to ensure that your wishes are followed to the letter in case you die. This is particularly true if you have multiple or high-value digital assets. This person should not only be trustworthy, but they should also be technologically informed so that they will know what to do if the time comes.

Specify Accessibility of the Assets

You need to specify the location of your digital assets and ensure they will be accessible to your executor and your heirs. This includes providing passwords, login names or access keys to your digital assets. The physical digital assets, such as external hard disks, you should store in a secure place such as a safe, a self-storage unit or a bank safe deposit box. Your choice of storage place will depend on the value of your digital assets. After that, furnish your executor or attorney (someone you trust) with the information so that they can access the assets after your demise.

Specify What You Want to be Done In Each Case

Once you have made the list, it's time to specify what you want done with each item in case you pass away. Here are some of the common disposal options depending on the specific assets and your personal preferences:

  • Archive the information
  • Delete some of your online pages and digital storage media
  • Transfer some of the assets, such as a monetized blog, to your heirs

Be as specific as you would be with other forms of assets if you wish your instructions to be followed.

For more information, work with a local estate planning attorney