Estate Planning for Your Digital Assets – New Article

My friend Wendy Werner recently talked me into writing an article on “succession planning” for computer systems, online materials and digital assets for the newly-released issue of the Law Practice Today webzine. Wendy edited the issue and it is an excellent look at succession planning for lawyers and law firms that I highly recommend you take a look at the entire issue.
I’m happy to have contributed an article to the issue. The article is called “Estate Planning for Your Digital Assets.”
I’m been thinking about writing an article on this topic for many years. What had stopped me was the complexity of the topic and how many difficult issues arise out of this topic.
However, nothing focuses the writing mind like a pressing deadline and I’m quite pleased with the results, which represent my attempt to put together a practical primer about these issues.
I tried to consolidate my suggested approach into 5 basic steps and that section makes up the core of the article:

A Simple Five-Step Plan to Manage Your Digital Estate
Step 1. Inventory Your Digital Assets.
Step 2. Identify Appropriate Help.
Step 3. Provide for Access.
Step 4. Provide Instructions.
Step 5. Give Appropriate Authority.

Based on my research for this article, there either is not much information on this subject available or it is far too difficult to find by searching in Google.
I also think that anyone with a significant Internet presence has concerns about what happen to that Internet presence in the event of their death or disability. However, almost everyone today has a growing number of “digital assets” and questions posed by them.
I’ve already gotten a very positive response to this article and hope that you find it helpful. I welcome your suggestions for other approaches that might work well for people trying to deal with their growing digital estates.
[Originally posted on DennisKennedy.Blog (http://www.denniskennedy.com/blog/)]
Follow my microblog on Twitter – @dkennedyblog. Follow me – @denniskennedy
Now Available! The Lawyer’s Guide to Collaboration Tools and Technologies: Smart Ways to Work Together, by Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell. Visit the companion website for the book at LawyersGuidetoCollaboration.com. Twitter: @collabtools
Technorati tags:

Comments

  1. says

    Great article Dennis. The question “What happens to my digital assets when I die?” is getting asked more and more each day.
    It is a large and growing problem. Using data from the CDC and Facebook, we’ve estimated that over 285k American Facebook users die each year.
    Your 5 point plan is a great way for people to start protecting their digital assets. I invite you to explore Entrustet.com, as the Account Guardian helps lawyers and consumers walk through this process using a simple wizard.