DIGITAL ASSETS IN GENERAL
Digital assets are essentially anything that exist in electronic format and come with the right to use (such as social media accounts or online bank accounts). Your digital assets don't automatically go away once you pass away, and you might not want them to. However, you will want the right people to have the ability to access, manage or terminate your digital assets.
Digital assets carry sentimental and financial value, and well as important personal and private information.
Photographs stored that your loved ones may want to keep as mementos
An email account might contain emails with important information such as electronic statements for bills, utilities, bank accounts, etc.
A Google calendar might have information about important upcoming meetings that your loved ones might need to know about
It's a good idea to inventory your digital assets and consider them in your estate plan, particularly if they have financial value.
Some digital accounts, such as Facebook and Google Accounts, give you the option to decide what happens to them once you pass away.
Facebook allows you to pick a "legacy contact" to manage your account or delete your account once Facebook is informed that you pass away. To do this, log in to your account at www.facebook.com
Click on the upside-down triangle▼ in the top right corner to open up a drop-down menu
Click on "Settings"
Click on "Manage Account"
Choose one of the following: My Legacy Contact OR Account Deletion
My Legacy Contact: this is a person you choose to manage your account after you pass away; they will be able to post on your "legacy" page but will not be able to post as you individually or see your messages. If you choose this option, you can give your legacy contact "Data Archive Permission", which allows them to download a copy of everything you've shared on Facebook.
Account Deletion: If you choose this option, your account will be permanently deleted after you pass away.
5. Click the "Close"button to save changes.
Google allows you to choose people who will have access and/or the ability to manage your Google Accounts once your account has been inactive for a designated period of time. To do this, log in to your account (for example, log in to www.gmail.com for a Gmail Account).
Click on your Google icon in the top right corner to open up a drop-down menu.
Click on "Google Account"
Under the "Privacy & Personalization" category, click on "Manage Your Data & Personalization.
Scroll down until you see "Download, Delete or Make A Plan for your Account" and click the START button.
You are now in the "Inactive Account Manager" section. Choose how much time should pass before you want Google to consider your account inactive (the default time is 3 months).
Add your cell phone number (this is a required step). You will receive a text with a code that you will need to verify.
Make sure your email account address is correct.
You can now choose up to 10 people that can access your accounts Provide their email addresses and cell phone numbers. There will be an option here to add a personal message. This part is optional and customizable by phone number.
Set up an Auto Reply if you wish.
Decided if you want your Google accounts to be deleted after a certain amount of time.
Review your plan and confirm.
If you have digital assets with financial value or are interested in learning more about how to properly plan your estate, contact the estate planning attorneys at Resch, Root, Phillipps & Graham, LLC. www.rrpg-law.com