Digital Assets in Estate Planning

Numerous people represent their real estate, securities and tangible property as part of their estate plan. Much of people’s lives are now online, potentially leaving an individual’s digital assets unclaimed or even susceptible to theft. A comprehensive estate plan should resolve the handling of digital assets.

Types of Digital Assets

There are a variety of digital properties that can range from sentimental yet economically useless to assets with high monetary worth. Blog sites, conversation forums, listservs and comparable locations can be important to some individuals. Email accounts might include confidential info and interactions that can costs services substantial amounts of money if the contents are exposed.


A central factor to consider concerning digital possessions is how a person can access them. With other kinds of assets, an individual might tell a trusted confidante or spouse where valuable properties lie. This may not be the case with digital possessions. Additionally, individuals have actually been informed over and over again not to write down passwords and to utilize strong passwords that others might not have the ability to quickly think.

Inventory of Possessions

Like an estate plan that deals with other kinds of property, the procedure starts by making an inventory of assets. This includes making a list of all assets and liabilities that are in digital type. For instance, a testator may make a list of all hardware, flash drives, backup discs, digital photos and similar tangible items. Then, the testator can explain where numerous files are kept and what is on them, such as monetary records or customer files.

Digital Administrator

The digital part of an estate plan may need to be handled by another person. Someone who is savvier with technology or who would know how to access this info may be better to handle this part of the estate, even if another administrator is named for the other elements of a testator’s estate.


There should be clear instructions relating to how a person desires to treat his or her digital properties after death. This might indicate shutting down a social media page. It might also suggest erasing personal files so that no one sees them. A testator might want to supply alert to particular individuals upon his/her death that can be much easier communicated if digital details is saved on these individuals.


With the rest of a person’s will, certain precautions need to be taken to guarantee that the testator’s properties will be safeguarded which all essential legal steps have been taken. The digital properties might be handled in the rest of an individual’s will or in a codicil to a will, depending on the state law where the law is formed. An estate planning lawyer may help with the process of making sure legal precautions are taken.