Does your estate plan include what happens to your digital assets if you become incapacitated or pass away? If your user names and passwords, your digital assets, are locked away in your head or in a digital or paper file that only you know about, you may mistakenly tell yourself, “I’ve got my estate plan (or business planning or both) covered – everything is done.”
Do you use eBay, PayPal, Amazon, online banking, an Instagram digital photo account, an iTunes account or email? Do you have a web site? If so, have you compiled all of your user names and passwords in one secure place?
You could use a web based digital asset protection program, but will your agent under a durable power of attorney or your successor trustee or personal representative know how to access that web site? To help with this estate plan concern, consider a low-tech solution or supplement to your existing system to protect your digital assets.
- Write or type all of your user names and passwords on paper and scan the paper image onto a disk or other form of portable storage device, such as a flash drive.
- Store the paper and the disk in a bank safe deposit box that can be accessed by the person who will help you when you can’t help yourself.
- When you visit your bank, take a moment to update your list when you have a new or amended user name or password.
If you have digital assets, as part of your estate plan storing your access information where your agent under a power of attorney, your successor trustee or your personal representative will have easy access to it is important. If you haven’t addressed this topic in your estate plan, there’s no time like the present to do so.
Stross Law Firm, P.A. can help with a No Cost or Obligation Half-Hour Consultation