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Digital Assets and Your Will: What You Need to Know

Apr 19, 2024 | Wills

In today’s digital age, our lives are increasingly intertwined with online platforms, digital assets, and electronic communications. From social media accounts to online banking and digital photo libraries, we all possess a range of digital assets that hold both sentimental and financial value. However, when it comes to estate planning, many people overlook the importance of including digital assets in their will. In this blog, we’ll explore what you need to know about digital assets and how to ensure they are properly addressed in your will.

 

What Are Digital Assets?

Digital assets encompass a wide range of electronic records and accounts, including:

  • Social Media Accounts: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.
  • Email Accounts: Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, etc.
  • Online Banking and Investment Accounts
  • Digital Photo and Video Libraries
  • Digital Music and eBook Collections
  • Cryptocurrency Accounts
  • Websites and Blogs
  • Online Gaming Accounts

Why Include Digital Assets in Your Will?

Including digital assets in your will is essential for several reasons:

  1. Access and Management
  • Access: Your executor needs access to your digital assets to manage, transfer, or close online accounts after your death.
  • Protection: Protect your digital legacy by ensuring your online accounts are managed and closed according to your wishes.
  1. Financial Value
  • Monetary Value: Some digital assets, such as cryptocurrency or digital investments, have monetary value that should be included in your estate.
  • Digital Property: Your digital assets, including online businesses or blogs, may have value as digital property or intellectual property.
  1. Sentimental Value
  • Memories and Legacy: Digital photo libraries, social media accounts, and personal emails hold sentimental value and memories that you may wish to preserve or pass on to loved ones.

How to Include Digital Assets in Your Will

  1. Create an Inventory of Your Digital Assets

Step 1: Create a comprehensive inventory of all your digital assets.

  1. Appoint a Digital Executor

Step 2: Appoint a digital executor in your will to manage your digital assets. Choose someone who is tech-savvy, trustworthy, and capable of navigating the complexities of managing digital assets.

  1. Specify Your Wishes for Each Digital Asset

Step 3: Clearly specify your wishes for each digital asset in your will. Decide whether you want to transfer, preserve, or delete each account and provide detailed instructions for your digital executor.

  1. Store Your Digital Inventory Safely

Step 4: Store your digital inventory securely, either in a password-protected digital file or a physical safe, and inform your executor of its location and how to access it.

  1. Review and Update Regularly

Step 5: Review and update your digital inventory and wishes regularly to reflect any changes in your digital assets or personal circumstances.

Conclusion

Including digital assets in your will is an essential aspect of modern estate planning that ensures your online accounts, digital property, and sentimental digital assets are managed, protected, and distributed according to your wishes after your death.

If you’re unsure about how to include digital assets in your will or need guidance on estate planning, contact MGF Legal Services for expert advice. Their experienced estate planning lawyers can provide tailored guidance to help you address your digital assets in your will and ensure your wishes are legally sound and comprehensive.

Take the proactive step to include digital assets in your will today and ensure your digital legacy is managed, protected, and passed on to your chosen beneficiaries according to your wishes. Don’t let your digital assets become a legal and financial burden for your loved ones; plan for the future with care and foresight.

Contact us

If you would like to speak to one of our expert lawyers, ring us on 01252 268862 or email us at marie@mgfwills.co.uk

Or, if you’d rather arrange a face to face appointment:

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