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Are you ready to create a digital estate plan?

In today’s technologically advanced world, most people’s lives are increasingly lived online, leading to the accumulation of significant digital assets. From social media accounts and digital photo libraries to online banking and investment portfolios, these digital assets play an integral role in your daily life. Therefore, including them in your estate plan is important.

By taking steps to create a “digital estate plan,” you can better ensure that your electronic footprint is managed according to your wishes upon your passing or in the event of incapacitation as a result of injury, illness or advanced age.

Steps to help you get started

Although it’s a good idea to seek personalized guidance when taking consequential estate planning steps, there are a few things you can do to start moving in the right direction:

  • Inventory your digital assets: The first step in digital estate planning is to create a comprehensive list of your digital assets. This list should include everything from email accounts and social media profiles to digital wallets, online banking information and any websites or blogs you own. Don’t forget about digital assets that may have sentimental value, such as photos, videos or personal blogs.
  • Designate a digital executor: Just as you would appoint an executor for your physical estate, it’s important to designate someone to manage your digital assets. This person, your digital executor, should be tech-savvy and trustworthy, with the ability to follow your wishes regarding the closure, preservation or transfer of your digital assets.
  • Provide access instructions: For your digital executor to manage your digital assets effectively, they will need access to them. This includes passwords, encryption keys and any other necessary login information. Consider using a secure digital password manager to store this information, and ensure your digital executor knows how to access it when needed.
  • Specify your wishes: Clearly outline what you want to happen to your digital assets after your passing. Whether you want certain accounts deleted, others turned into memorial pages or specific data archived and passed on to loved ones, your instructions should be detailed in your estate plan.

By taking these steps, you can better ensure that your digital legacy is handled in ways that reflect your wishes accurately.