Digital Assets are a Part of Estate Planning

Digital assets are assets too

You digital assets need to be taken care of as a part of your estate plan.  In a recent article by the Wall Street Journal (below) the author details the estate planning efforts that go into each unique client’s assets.  Many times, we only think of physical assets, like our home or cars as our only assets.  However, as the world moves to digitization, there are more and more assets that are around, including such things as iTunes accounts, travel reward accounts, credit card reward accounts, etc.

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So, take a careful inventory of what you have before you get your estate plan updated.  It could well be worth it.

See the full WSJ Article at: http://www.wsj.com/articles/estate-planning-for-digital-assets-1431357357

Kelly Pedersen’s client was in his 60s and needed some estate planning help.

The client told Ms. Pedersen that he had recently digitized his file cabinet by scanning estate, financial and tax documents that the adviser needed in order to work on the estate plan.

The client had uploaded all of these documents to a cloud storage service, which made the adviser wonder: What would happen to those digital files as well as the client’s other online holdings when he dies?

In addition to the digital documents, Ms. Pedersen learned that her client had an eBay account, a PayPal account with nearly $30,000 in it, and an iTunes account worth $2,000.

“The client had never seen his digital assets as an issue that needed to be addressed in an estate plan,” says Ms. Pedersen, founder of Caissa Wealth Strategies, which manages $71 million for 52 households in Minneapolis, Minn.,

So, the adviser did some research on digital estate planning and discovered that as a fiduciary, she needed to distribute digital assets in addition to tangible assets. However, even if she were acting as a fiduciary, many of the businesses who hold these digital files would not allow her access to her client’s accounts when he passes away.

see the rest at the WSJ.

 

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