Thinking about putting together your estate planning documents or updating them? While you are deciding who you want to have access to your financial and health information, you also need to decide who can have access to your digital assets if you become incapacitated and/or after your death.
These assets – passwords, email accounts, online banking, medical information and reports, photos, a Facebook or LinkedIn account among other social media sites – have become so much a part of our everyday lives that we take them for granted. Anyone other than the actual owner must prove the right to access the account(s) and data.
Each state has its own rules regarding digital assets as do the companies that create and make all this technology available to us. Make life easier for your trustees, executors and heirs by checking with the companies with which you do business to learn their rules and restrictions. Your estate planning attorney can include language in your documents to address providing access to your online assets as well.
Make sure you share this information with your attorney, whoever holds your power(s) of attorney and your executor and update the information periodically. There are password managers and digital vaults like keeper®, LastPass or RoboForm that can help you keep track and store all your passwords in one place. Planning to protect your digital assets is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and your loved ones.