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How to organize digital assets in estate planning

On Behalf of | May 8, 2018 | Firm News

When creating a will, people know to include information about how to divide property and money. However, things are not so cut-and-dry when it comes to digital property. Social media accounts and other items that exist online are still relatively new to legal professionals, but it is important to divide these assets so the right people maintain them after your death.

Information related to social media accounts can go into your various estate planning documents. An attorney can walk you through all the steps so that whatever you want done to these assets actually happens.

It should include a list of all your digital assets

To begin, you want to create a list of all digital assets you own. This includes all types of social media you are active on, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. It can also include information related to your email account and any accounts you have on shopping, video sharing and communication sites. You also want to make sure you lay out all physical property you own related to these accounts, which can include laptops, external hard drives, digital cameras and smartphones.

Determine what you want the executor to do

Once you know exactly what you have, you need to figure out what you want done with each item. Some people may want their social media accounts deleted after death while others will want these maintained. Certain items may come with monetary value. Laptops and physical property certainly come with value, but you should also consider if you own any monetized blogs that bring in money, even if it is a relatively small amount. You will need to divide these assets the same as any other piece of property.

Secure this information

Your attorney or a trusted beneficiary should have the information necessary to access this information. Write down passwords and additional log-in information for all your accounts so people can get into them after you pass away.