Your Digital Legacy

Facebook. Twitter. eBay. iTunes. YouTube. Flickr. Picasa. Email.
What happens to all of it when you are gone? Who owns it? How do you want it taken care?

The new era of online sharing has created a legal issue our times were not exactly prepared for. Families could be forced into legal battles with huge companies, exhausting resources and time simply to protect your digital footprint. Digital estate planning is a very important phase in Estate Planning, and one that your attorney, Richard A Bookspan, takes very seriously.

Digital Estate Planning is made up of three crucial parts; the digital assets, how to access them and how to dispose or dispose of them when the time comes.

The Digital Assets
The assets we are discussing are all elements that are uploaded, stored and/or exclusively accessed online. These can include, but are not limited to, business and personal websites, social networking websites, photo and video sharing and storing sites, music and video download services, visual interest boards and business and personal blogs.

To ensure that your digital legacy is protected it is important that your executor knows what digital assets you have. Creating a concise list of all digital assets and identifying the best person to care for these assets is a vital part in protecting your digital legacy.

Access
The protection of personal and private information is a responsibility digital providers takes very seriously. Currently, a simple Power of Attorney may not be adequate enough to persuade a digital services provider to allow you access to another person’s digital property. To ensure your digital property and legacy is protected, it is vital that your digital estate planning include access points, URLs and passwords used to access this information. Fast, simple and legally documented access to your personal digigal property is the only way to ensure that your information can be taken care of in a swift manner. Digital password vaults, a safety deposit box, and your attorney are all suitable ways to store access to your digital property. Your digital estate planning should include a timetable by which this information is updated regularly.

Disperse or Dispose?
In the event that an executor must act on your behalf, the most important information you can document is HOW you want your digital information handled. It should be noted, this type of information is important in times of death, divorce or business dissolvement. In some instances, your business and/or your family’s privacy could be jeopardized while these types of decisions are being made.

How do you want your social media pages handled?
Would you like a final message posted to your “friends”?
Do your loved ones have explicit permission to post information about you?
What happens to fans of a blog or social media page?

The message that is shared at the end of anything; a business, marriage or life is one that is to be handled with grace and respect. Detailed and explicit Digital Estate Planning is a guaranteed way to ensure dignity in the end and the Law Offices of Richard A Bookspan, PC can ensure you are protected with digital estate planning.