As you consider your estate plan, you may have a mental checklist of what you need to include. You know you need to include major assets like your home and vehicles. You also know you need to distribute your financial assets like cash and retirement accounts.
When thinking about your estate plan, you may not think about your email and social media accounts. Depending on the account, it may close after a certain period of inactivity, or it could leave your loved ones vulnerable to scams and hackers.
Here’s what you should know about managing your electronic accounts after you die.
Knowing what you have
Now that email addresses and social media accounts are part of everyday life, you will probably have at least one or two accounts that will need attention after you pass away. More likely, you may have a handful of email addresses and accounts on more than one social media platform.
These accounts may include pictures and personal information that could leave these and your other accounts vulnerable. In some cases, people will use the data from one account to create a password library to start predicting your login information for other, more valuable accounts.
Creating a plan
Once you have completed an inventory of your electronic accounts, you will need to decide what should happen with them after you pass away. It is sometimes helpful for grieving loved ones to be able to memorialize your account, so they have a way of looking back at their memories with you.
Once you decide what you want to do with each account, you will need to leave passwords and instructions in your estate plan. You should talk to a skilled professional about what to include to make this process simple for your loved ones.