We live in an increasingly digitized world. The fact that most people have at least one social media profile nowadays is proof of that. And even if you don't have a Facebook or Twitter account, chances are you use email, online banking, and other similar services on a regular basis. In other words, you have a digital legacy, and it’s important to protect it. Here are a few strategies that estate planning attorneys often share with clients for doing just that.
3 Tips for Managing Your Digital Assets
1. Keep an Ongoing Log
Before you can take steps to protect a digital legacy, you must determine precisely what it includes. Therefore, it’s essential to take inventory of everything. Start an ongoing log, and use it to track all domains you own and accounts you’ve opened. You should also make a note of all devices, including desktop computers, smartphones, and tablets, that can access any of these accounts.
2. Devise a Plan of Action for Each Account
After you have taken inventory of everything, an estate planning attorney can help you create a comprehensive spreadsheet that contains a course of action for each asset. This spreadsheet should include the URL, username, and password for each account, as well as the action that should be taken upon death. Examples include copy and close, delete and close, or memorialize. The spreadsheet should also differentiate between digital assets that have sentimental value and those that have financial value.
3. Update Critical Documents as Needed
Because your digital legacy will inevitably change over time, it’s wise to review the log and spreadsheet at least once a year and modify them as needed. Or, to ensure they're always up-to-date, you can digitize and update them every time an account is opened or closed.
For help protecting your digital legacy, turn to the estate planning attorneys at Loughlin FitzGerald, P.C. Practicing out of Wallingford, CT, the attorneys at this firm are proud to serve both individuals and businesses throughout New Haven County. Their legal team has more than 125 years of combined experience in the field, and they practice in a variety of areas, including real estate law, wrongful death, and civil litigation. To get in touch with one of their estate planning attorneys, call (203) 265-2035 or fill out the form on their website.