Helen Taylor explains what happens to digital assets when you pass away and how to make provision for them in your Will…
Including digital assets in your Will
When we think about making a Will, very few of us realise digital assets can be included, let alone consider including them. Much of the law governing Wills dates back to the Wills Act, which was passed in 1837, so it’s understandable. However, it’s worth thinking about including them.
What digital assets you can include in your Will
Digital assets can have significant value. Cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, can be extremely valuable. But equally, it can be easily overlooked and lost if your computer is discarded.
More commonly, online banking facilities, such as PayPal and online shopping accounts, should be considered.
In today’s digital world, it’s likely you have at least one social networking account, such as Facebook or LinkedIn, if not more. Think about what you’d want to happen to these when you pass away. How will your Executors know exactly what online social media accounts you have and how to access them?
It’s also worth thinking about anything digital with sentimental value. Many of us have photos, videos and music stored in the cloud. Access to these is often based on license agreements, so you can access them, but you may not have any rights to these items. With this in mind, you should back-up items so you, and those that survive you, can access them.
What should you do about these assets?
For all of these digital assets, consider including a note in your Will, so your Executors know where to find them and how to access them when they’re administering your estate. For digital assets with financial value, it’s worth discussing them with a solicitor, as it could affect your Inheritance Tax position.
If you’re considering including any digital assets in your will, our team can give you advice and support. Please get in touch on 01908 660 966.
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