Estate Planning For Your Digital Assets

On Behalf of | Jun 3, 2015 | Firm News

Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC

Estate Planning for Your Digital Assets

As the Internet has become intertwined in our everyday lives, most people store personal information online. Whether you have a Facebook account, belong to a message board, or conduct online banking, you have an online presence. This collection of an individual’s personal online data has become known as his or her “digital assets.” So what happens when you pass away? How do your loved ones obtain access to your email accounts? Your bank information? Your PayPal account? Your retirement accounts? What happens when you run an online business, such as eBay or Etsy?

Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act

Increasingly, states are adopting a version of the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA), which is a model statute released by the Uniform Law Commission. Several states have already used the UFADAA to create state statutes that address access to decedents’ digital assets.

Although Minnesota has not yet adopted the UFADAA, state lawmakers are currently considering it. Under the UFADAA, an estate fiduciary gains access to digital assets but lacks the authority to copy, transfer, control, or distribute them. Because so many people have dispensed with paper recordkeeping, access to online accounts can be tremendously useful for estate fiduciaries, allowing them to more accurately inventory a decedent’s assets and debts.

Including Digital Assets in Your Estate Plan

Fortunately, there are ways to include digital assets in a traditional estate plan. Work with your attorney to create a list of all your online accounts, including usernames and passwords. Update the list regularly when passwords or usernames change.

Minnesota Estate Planning and Probate Law Firm

Call the Minnesota probate and estate planning attorneys at Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC today our office today to learn more and to discuss your options.

This website has been prepared by Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.