Digital Assets is a set of digital properties you own. This can range from social media profiles to email accounts to documents stored in cloud to online shopping accounts and frequent flyer miles.
Do you use social media to connect with friends and family? Do you post photos or videos regularly on social media sites? Do you share recipes through blogs? Do you own a website where you offer a service – this can be a small business such as selling second-hand books to digital art. Do you store your important documents on the cloud? All these activities are a part of your daily digital life.
Have you wondered what happens to these accounts when you pass away? Who will look after your online business? Who will download the documents you stored on the cloud? Who will manage your social media profiles for you?
If you want your family members to handle these accounts for you when you no longer can (death or incapacity), you will have to make provisions for it. You can do so by leaving instructions to them through a Digital Estate Plan (which is nothing but an Estate Plan exclusive to your Digital Assets) or include them in your Estate Planning document.
Digital Assets that can pass through your Will
All Digital Assets that you own and have a monetary or tangible value can be included in your Estate Plan. You can choose who gets to handle or manage these Digital Assets after you pass away. This provision can be included in your Will.
Digital Assets that you can pass to your beneficiaries include:
- Funds in a PayPal account
- Funds owed to you by any online store such as eBay, Etsy or Amazon
- Any form of Digital Art such as photos or music stored on your computer’s hard drive
For transferring cryptocurrency, make sure you include details of your Private Key and the device used to make the purchase. This is very important because Cryptocurrencies work on the principle of a public key and a private key. While a public key, as the name suggests, is sharable, a private key is unique to each buyer.
Depending on each company’s legacy policies, you can also transfer frequent flyer miles, domains and websites to your beneficiaries.
Also, if you do not name a specific beneficiary for your Digital Assets, it will be transferred to your residuary beneficiary/beneficiaries.
Digital Assets that cannot be included in your Will
Digital Assets that do not have any monetary values cannot be passed through your Will. Though these types of assets do not have any financial value, they hold sentimental value to you and your family members.
Digital Assets that do not have any monetary value include:
- Email and social media accounts
- Personal blogs (depending on transfer or legacy policies)
- Entertainment subscription accounts such as Spotify, Prime Video and Netflix
- Gaming profiles
In brief, it is not worth any money or you do not own it, you cannot include it in your Will.
Does this mean these accounts cannot be managed by your family members after you’re gone?
No. You can always make arrangements as to what must happen to these accounts after you pass away or cannot handle them anymore due to an illness or incapacity.
This can be done by creating an Estate Plan for your Digital Assets, also known as a Digital Estate Plan.
You might also be interested in reading:
If you live in the US, you might want to have a look at the law governing fiduciary access to your Digital Assets – also known as RUFADAA. If you are a Canadian, the Fiduciary access to Digital Assets is governed by UADAFA.
Sign up with Clocr today and create your very own Digital Estate Plan. You can also make use of our Digital Will services and create an Online Will for your Digital Assets.