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Inventorying your digital assets for your estate plan

Getting your life affairs in order can seem like a monumental task. Certainly, you will need to go over various aspects of your life, and you may feel a number of emotions as you go through the estate planning experience. You may be able to look back on aspects of your life with fondness and make important decisions about your future and the future of your estate.

Because so much of your life goes into your estate plan, it is easy to overlook things. In particular, intangible items may not immediately land on your radar as far as including them in your plans. However, because you likely have a lot of online accounts and profiles, it is important that you do not forget your digital assets when creating your plan.

How can you include your digital life?

Thinking about including your digital life in your estate plan may seem overwhelming on its own. After all, you may have created various online accounts over the years and wonder how they will be taken care of after your passing. Before you feel too overwhelmed, you may want to start the process by inventorying your online accounts. Some examples of accounts that you may have include the following:

  • Email accounts
  • Online photo storage accounts
  • Forum and message board accounts
  • Social media accounts
  • Bank accounts
  • Investment accounts
  • Subscriptions to streaming services

You also do not want to forget files on your computer, your smartphone content, accounts you have for apps on your computer or phone, and more. When creating this inventory, you may want to write down your username and password for each account and device and provide any other important information that your executor or other party may need to access the accounts, like security question answers.

Tricky factors

Addressing digital assets can have some tricky aspects. For instance, some online providers may not provide information to third parties even after the account holder's passing, and others may have specific policies for handling an account after a person's passing. As a result, it is important to go over terms of service to see what you may need to do to ensure your accounts pass on as you desire.

Having a comprehensive estate plan can help avoid confusion in the future. However, it is important that you create your plan correctly. If you have concerns about including your digital assets in your plan, you may want to go over the topic with a Kentucky estate planning attorney.

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