Does My Fiduciary Need Access To Digital Assets?

Federal laws as well as many state privacy laws prohibit the unauthorized disclosure of someone’s digital access information to third parties. This means you must be prepared to create a digital asset inventory and have a plan for how this will transfer on to your fiduciary. A fiduciary is a term that refers to many people who are responsible for various aspects of your estate.fiduciary

A fiduciary can include an agent under a power of attorney document, a trustee or an executor. This person should be provided with all details needed to access your digital assets, such as passwords and usernames. You may want to provide additional instructions especially if your fiduciary is not digitally savvy.

Start by making your own list of all the digital assets you own. Depending on what you use as an individual and for any side hustles or businesses, this could be a much bigger list than you expect.

This might include things like:

  • Email accounts
  • Social media platforms
  • Websites/domains
  • Banking and online financial accounts
  • Photo or online storage

Once you’re ready to incorporate digital assets into your estate plan, it’s a great time to meet with a qualified estate planning attorney in New Hampshire. We can discuss which of these may have tangible value, but also those accounts that you want to be passed on to your loved ones because of sentimental value. As you add digital assets or change details like your login, make sure you update your estate plan or the list of login information.



Do You Know Where Your Digital Assets Will Go?

You are creating a digital footprint every time you post something on social media, share a photo gallery with your loved ones, look at your health records electronically or send an email.

But what happens to all of the assets or accounts associated with these actions after you pass away? Have you created a plan for how these will be deleted, preserved, or made inactive once you pass away? If not, you need a plan for your personal assets to be managed or removed. Your estate plan can help you do it.

This situation is compounded if you run a business or have a side hobby with a website, podcast or blog creating even more digital assets to keep track of. A digital estate plan is a crucial component of planning today, whether it’s handled through services that assign digital beneficiaries, documenting this in your will or compiling a list of all of your online accounts and passwords to be given to a trusted friend of family member.

Given the volume of online accounts that most people have today, you could be creating a mess for your executor who is not aware of all of these accounts or how to access or value them.

Saving materials stored in these online accounts could be important for your loved ones who want access to cherished family photos. Schedule a consultation with a trusted estate planning lawyer to discuss what belongs in your digital estate plan and how you can accomplish it effectively.

Our NH estate planning law firm is here to guide you when you need support around digital assets or the rest of your estate plan.