How to Include Digital Assets in Your Estate Plan

Digital assets have become a significant part of almost all of our lives. We want our loved ones to be able to recover what’s important to us, such as photos saved to the cloud or important documents saved on our computer, but because security is also an important concern, we want to ensure that we can do it safely. Thankfully, just as technology has become a more central part of our lives, estate planning has become able to accommodate your digital assets.

  1. Pick a Digital Executor

The executor is the person who will “execute” the details of your estate plan, so choosing one who is comfortable with handling your digital assets is crucial if you plan to include them with your estate plan. Ensure that your digital executor knows how to fulfill their role and that they are familiar with what they’ll need to do to execute the digital parts of your estate plan.

  1. Aggregate Your Information

Your usernames, passwords, and email addresses should all be organized in a way that makes it easy for your digital executor to access them. This is especially pertinent for your email accounts, as they’re commonly the central points between all of your accounts and other important information like bills or personal information. This can be the most difficult part of adding digital assets to your estate plan, as you want to keep your accounts secure, but ensure that they’re easy to access only by your executor. One great way of doing this is to use a password manager, which saves all of your usernames and passwords for you. Using a password manager, you could leave a single password for your executor, who would then use it to access all of your accounts. These are also great for everyday use and personal internet security. 

  1. Clearly Define Your Wishes

Leaving your digital assets to an executor isn’t of much use if you don’t tell them what to do with them. Most handling of digital assets in an estate plan consists of managing bills by transferring them to another account or canceling them if they’re no longer needed, accessing bank information, and moving pictures or videos to a place where they’re safe.

  1. Speak to Your Estate Planning Attorney

The last, but most important step – working with your estate planning attorney is always important whenever you want to make changes to your estate plan, so be sure to discuss your plans for digital assets with them and ensure that your wishes are properly protected by your plan. If you haven’t started on your estate planning, or already have but wish to make an update, contact Albright & Lumpkin, PC today or call our office at (713) 455-6661.

 

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Albright & Lumpkin, PC

At Albright & Lumpkin, we help individuals, families, and business owners achieve their goals and protect their futures.

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