The majority of baby boomers now own a smartphone and regularly use social media to keep in touch with family and friends. With this increase in the use of technology comes an increased responsibility to make a plan for the disposition of your online photos, texts, tweets, videos, emails and the other elements of your online existence.
Estate planning experts recommend creating an inventory of all your digital assets with the relevant user names, passwords and security questions as part of the instructions you provide to the trusted person who will settle your estate.
The task can be daunting, but a first step is to write down all the devices you own and the passwords needed to unlock each device, and then make a list of the electronic records you use, own or control. While this list is not comprehensive, it should serve as a good starting point to assist you in compiling an inventory of all your digital assets:
Once you complete your list, specific instructions on how you wish your digital assets and online accounts to be handled can be passed on to the person in charge of your estate, who can then manage and maintain, or close and dispose of your email and social media accounts, based on your preferences. These instructions can be detailed in a simple letter, or incorporated into your will, trust or power of attorney.
The professionals at Legacy Assurance Plan can provide members with valuable assistance in preparing an estate plan that provides for the management of your digital accounts in the event of incapacity or death, and directs the disposition of your remaining assets in a manner that avoids probate and is consistent with your personal wishes. Technology evolves quickly, and you also need to act quickly if you want to protect and preserve your personal legacy.