- Organizing your digital assets so that your agent, executor, or trustee can know what files and accounts you have and where they are located;
- Adding language to your Power of Attorney, Will or Trust that will empower your agent, executor, or trustee to gain access to all of your data and the information being stored by third parties; and
- Updating the bequests in your Will or Trust as necessary to make any bequests of your digital assets to one or more of your beneficiaries.
- Digital Property With Monetary Value – This category would include any digital asset that produces income, such as websites, blogs, domain names, copyright material, trademarks and code, as well as art, photos and eBooks. Other digital property that may have monetary value are PayPal, accounts at online banks, loyalty reward programs and other accounts used to hold or manage money or other forms of purchasing power; online stores that you manage and the digital assets of any businesses you may own, including databases, websites, storefronts, accounts and code. Some computing hardware may also have monetary value, for example, the remaining portion of computer leases. You should also ensure that the digital assets of your non-web-based businesses be included in the valuation of the business for the purpose of sale or transfer to heirs.
- Personal Digital Property – Examples include computers, smart phones, tablets, external hard drives, digital music readers, digital cameras and other computer hardware an individual owns. It also includes any information stored electronically on devices, computers or in the cloud that may have no intrinsic value on the open market, but does have personal value to your family and friends. This kind of information includes accounts for email, social media, photo and video sharing, gaming, storage and personal websites and blogs. It may also include intellectual property such as domain names, copyright material, trademarks and code you may have written.
Individuals who own their own business or use the Internet or smartphones to manage a significant part of their lives should contact a Meyer Unkovic & Scott Private Clients Group attorney for advice and counsel on updating their estate plan to include all of their current and anticipated digital assets.
This material is for informational purposes only. It is not and should not be solely relied on as legal advice in dealing with any specific situation.