Think about it… how many online accounts do you access on a regular basis? 10, 20, 50, 100? Would it surprise you to know that most American email addresses are attached to 130 online accounts? So, what happens to all of those accounts when you pass away? Let’s dig in and see what you should know about access to those accounts and things you can do to protect your estate when you’re gone.
What is an online account?
We use online accounts to conveniently manage services and conduct transactions for everything from groceries to clothing to insurance and more. We provide a lot of information to establish these accounts and that information should be protected both while we’re still here using the services and when our estate is in the settlement process. What we don’t want to do is leave our private information unsecured and vulnerable.
Examples of online accounts:
- Bank & Investment Accounts
- Retail accounts
- Computer services
- Social media
- Internet-based applications
- Memberships & Associations
- Health Services
- Photo storing sites
- Travel Services (Airlines, hotels, rental cars, etc.)
What happens to online accounts upon death?
- Whatever you have online does not belong to you. Upon acceptance of the online company’s Terms and Conditions, you waived ownership of your online account.
- The account will have to be closed or may expire upon death.
- After your death, no one will be able to access your account unless you’ve shared your account access information with a trusted individual or secured it in a comprehensive end-of-life planning document or a secured digital resource.
- Your trusted individual(s) more than likely will experience issues in accessing your account.
If something happens to you, your online accounts will be just another mystery to solve for your loved ones. However, you can take action now to communicate this information to your loved ones at a time chosen by you. The result is an easier and less costly process of settling your estate for those left behind.
We suggest our digital lockbox Life Estate Organizer (LEO) to assist you in this process. LEO is a private digital organizer. With LEO you can:
- Record the account information related to your online accounts.
- Legally appoint individuals to resolve issues regarding your online accounts and content.
- Share your account information with appointed individuals at a time chosen by you.
- Give instructions to your executor and/or Digital Trustee as it relates to settling these issues.
- These same documents could be used with the online accounts as proof you have been approved by the deceased to access their accounts as well as the content on the platform.
In most cases, unless someone requests access or you set-up an online tool to be activated due to inactivity in your account, nothing will happen. However, when someone requests access is when the rubber meets the road. That is when the online account owner exercises their different rules for your account to be accessed by someone other than you. These rules can be very difficult to deal with when all your trusted individuals want to do is achieve closure for you with respect to the accounts.
What should you do?
- Select a secure method of listing all online account information… have we mentioned LEO?
- Identify access procedures to online accounts.
- Record account username and password access details.
- Keep items one through four up to date in your digital organizer account.
- Create a power of attorney with a loved one or trusted individual. Caution: a power of attorney expires upon death or incapacitation.
- Choose an executor to address your after-death estate online account issues.
- Write detailed instructions as to what you want to happen with each account.
- Keep the above information in a safe and secure place but accessible upon death… oh, you know like in a LEO account!
All of the above “What should you do?” can be completed using LEO. It is a comprehensive storage lockbox for all your critical data plus anything else you’d like to store for your loved ones to have once you are gone, including photos, personal messages, bequeaths, treasured recipes, and more.
We offer a No-Obligation FREE 30-DAY TRIAL of Life Estate Organizer. That’s right, No credit card required to try LEO. Why do we do that? Because we are sure Life Estate Organizer is the best tool to use to organize and secure your private estate and life details.
It’s simple to sign up and begin using LEO.
Follow these steps to get started with LEO:
- Click FREE TRIAL, enter an ID and Password.
- Click submit, click Launch and you are ready to go.
- On the upper left-hand side of the page, you will see Profile Scope Selection.
- Click on the words Profile Scope Selection, check the blocks in front of Profile Owner, Property, Creditors, Financial and Investments click on any of these Sections and another menu will appear.
- Check all the blocks, click the Submit Button, a menu will appear.
- Click any of the items listed in #4 above and select the item you identify as one of your online accounts and fill in the data.
Take us up on our FREE TRIAL OFFER. There is nothing to lose and so much to gain.