What Happens After I Pass On? Social Media ED. Near Lexington, Kentucky (KY) Like Online Access

A recent blog of ours focused on loose ends to attend to after you complete your estate planning. Now let’s talk about what to do about your social media and related items. Facebook, instagram, Twitter, iCloud storage, information stored in your computer, fifty different passwords! We access information online and on our computers all day. Just as we encourage you to document where you bank and where you have accounts to make steps easier for your survivors, a notebook or list with all this social media and related information will save time and avoid headaches.

The first step is to select the person or persons who will manage all of this. For some of these tasks, the same person you name as the executor who will be wrapping up matters already might be a logical option, since the tasks might be linked (bank accounts, for example). Otherwise, your executor might need to work in tandem with the selected person. For others, the selected person might work just as well on their own. Confirm the person you select is willing to take on the responsibility. And make sure you let your designee know where to find the material after your death. If no one can find that carefully curated list, it won’t be much good!

Create a detailed list covering the various categories:

  • Accounts such as Instagram and Facebook.
  • Programs such as Quickbooks.
  • Items on your cell phone like photos, texts and emails?
  • Online access to credit cards or bank accounts.
  • Reward programs.
  • Subscription services like Netflix and Amazon.
  • Blogs.
  • Email addresses.

Brainstorm as you go about your day, noting what you yourself need special information to access.

Next in a safe manner, you need to document the data they need to access the various sites and accounts. By safe, we mean very secure, perhaps encrypted or in a safe deposit box. You do not want someone to find the information and access your accounts. Consider writing down the name or username of the account, the email address, the password, the PIN numbers and other important identifying information.

You have several options for what happens next all of which you should state clearly:

  • Ask for accounts or assets to be deleted
  • Ask for accounts or assets to be maintained and continued
  • Ask for accounts or assets to be preserved but not continued
  • Leave instructions about items that create or generate income

Finally, consider adding language to your will and general power of attorney to provide further guidance to your family and friends.

Please feel free to discuss this further with your estate planning attorney.