Before the internet, California residents building estate portfolios likely did not discuss digital assets. In fact, most people would probably wonder what they are. Nowadays, however, the majority of people in this state and throughout the country are tapped into an online world for both personal purposes and those related to business. This has changed the face of many types of transactions, including those connected to estate planning.
Considering digital assets may be a key factor in a particular estate, especially if business interests are involved. There are several things an estate owner can do to organize his or her electronic assets so when the time comes to administer the estate, everything will be spelled out. That may help family members and other concerned parties avoid confusion and stress.
A logical first step in organizing one’s digital assets is to separate those pertaining to one’s private life from those connected to business. Typically, personal digital assets include things like photographs, online financial accounts and files. Business-related assets online may include domains, copyrighted materials and other types of intellectual property.
Designating one or more people to have power over digital asset access in your estate is also an option. The main point is to identify all digital assets that exist and determine who will own and/or manage them during the administration of an estate. For help in the estate planning process with regard to digital assets or any other feature, a California estate owner can request a meeting with an experienced probate and estate administration attorney.
Source: post-gazette.com, “Business Workshop: Don’t forget digital assets in estate planning“, Daniel P. Gallagher, May 30, 2017