Most Californians with estate plans in place make arrangements concerning the disposition of their money and physical assets after they pass away. However, many of these people forgot to consider their digital assets in their estate planning efforts. This can cause some significant problems when it comes to time to administer the estate.
The problem is that the law is not clear as far as how to deal with digital assets in general. This is especially true after a person passes away. Therefore, it is important to take action while one is alive in order to prevent problems following an unexpected death.
In doing so, it's typically beneficial to read all of the relevant fine print from social media sites, such as Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. Usually, consumers regularly consent to various terms without actually reading the legal documents to which they are agreeing. Within these terms and agreements, the policies on how to deal with an account after a person has passed away are detailed. Some accounts will allow another person to cancel the account, while other social media accounts do not.
New laws are currently being created in California in order to bring more clarity to estate planning for digital assets. Understandably, it is important to be aware of the latest applicable laws when it comes to digital assets. This is important for physical assets as well, since any change in the law can affect various aspects of estate planning. An attorney with experience in handling probate and estate administration issues can provide valuable insight and support while considering these matters.
Source: news8000.com, "Digital estate planning, how to manage your assets before you die", Keely Arthur, May 3, 2015