Let's See, What Would Grandpa's Password Be …


As we spend more of our lives online -- banking, collecting credit card rewards points, playing virtual reality games, creating photo albums, emailing, tweeting -- it's increasingly important to consider how beneficiaries can access those accounts and any assets they hold, once we're gone.

A part of estate planning that you don't want to overlook is access. This means access to your bank accounts, credit cards, investments, and the like.

Fox Business discussed the preparations you should be undertaking now in a recent article entitled "Tips for Planning Your Estate for the Digital Age".

"Planning your digital afterlife," as Fox Business calls it, can prevent numerous headaches for loved ones by taking a few simple measures. This will decrease the chances of family members becoming online sleuths (by design or default) after you're gone. The article suggests these ideas:

• Keep a snail mail trail. Even if you do business mostly online, you should ask to receive some paper statements so your heirs can have info on your accounts from mail delivery; and
• Consolidate your accounts. Combining financial accounts or at least moving assets to a small number of institutions will make them easier to track.

Otherwise, Fox says, finding the records could be sheer luck.

As part of your planning, you should consult with an experienced estate planning attorney who can give you more ideas on how to set up your estate in the most efficient manner.

If you’d like to talk with an Estate Planning attorney, visit www.elderlawannarbor.com.

Reference: Fox Business (March 21, 2014) "Tips for Planning Your Estate for the Digital Age"

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