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Digital assets should be included in estate plans

Most Oklahoma residents know the value of protecting assets in an estate plan. Usually people consider assets like property, person belongings and financial accounts in these plans. Digital assets are relatively new, but equally important, assets that should be included in an estate plan.

Almost everyone has an online presence. There are some tips to help a person prepare their digital assets for after they pass away. First, a person should make an inventory of all of their online accounts, sign-on information and passwords. A password manager service can be used to safely store all passwords and log in information and this can be shared with an estate executor.

In addition, a person should have a digital asset plan incorporated into their estate plan. The more specific a person is about their digital assets the better. A person may want to write specific directions for each of their online accounts. This can include what to do with them and should include a general statement encompassing all digital accounts. Because digital accounts contain a vast amount of personal information, a person should choose their estate executor carefully. An executor should also be a person who is familiar with digital accounts.

Estate planning is not just about wills and trusts. Medical decisions, charitable donations and a person's online presence can all be part of an estate plan. A skilled estate planning attorney can help you understand your options and decide what types of plans will meet your needs and those of your loved ones.

Source: marketwatch.com, "How to include your digital assets in your estate plan," accessed Feb. 17, 2017

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