Serving New Jersey
since 1988

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One Paragon Drive, Suite 240
Montvale, NJ 07645
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Digital Estate Planning

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The estate planning attorneys at Rubenstein, Meyerson, Fox, Mancinelli, Conte & Bern, P.A. are on the forefront of digital estate planning.  In the twenty-first century, we all have digital “assets” that we value.  An individual’s digital assets can include social media accounts, blogs, email accounts, domain names and websites, loyalty program points, digital money and digitally stored music.  When conducting estate planning, our attorneys counsel clients to consider their digital assets and whether they would want their digital assets shared with their next-of-kin or fiduciary.  Many online services, including email providers, have terms of service policies that generally prohibit access to a third-party upon the death of the account holder.  However, many online services provide an individual the option to change the default policy and choose whether to grant access and allow third-parties to access their account after their death.  We believe it is important to discuss the options available to clients so they can make an informed decision about how their digital assets will be managed by their estate.

Our attorneys also work with our clients to inventory their digital accounts.  When someone dies the estate’s executor or administrator is tasked with paying the estate’s debts and closing or transferring the decedent’s accounts. With banking and business increasingly done exclusively online, it is common for an individual’s statements to go directly to their email accounts.  Without access to a decedent’s email and without an inventory of a decedent’s accounts, fiduciaries are left to scramble to fulfill their estate responsibilities.   Proper planning, including the inventorying of digital assets, can relieve much of the frustration associated with administrating an estate in the twenty-first century.

In addition to including digital assets in our estate planning, our attorneys work with the executors and administrators of estates on digital issues, including the sale of domain names and the transfer of loyalty award points.  Most credit card companies, airlines and hotels have loyalty programs that provide points to their customers that can be utilized for free trips, upgrades and all sorts of consumer goods.  Each loyalty program has its own policies on the transfer of points upon a customer’s death.  Our attorneys work with fiduciaries to ensure that points are transferred if possible and not forfeited.

Digital assets are an increasingly important part of estate planning and estate administration.  At RMFMC&B, P.A. we are proud to be on the cutting edge of this emerging issue.

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