Everyday there is becoming an increasing need for Digital Asset protection as more and more digital assets are created. In Estate Planning and “Virtual Assets” – Part 1, a recent article written by Washington attorney Michael Walker, he discusses digital assets and recommends doing two things to protect your digital afterlife. First, he recommends integrating digital assets, or “virtual” assets, into your estate plan. By choosing a trustworthy representative for your estate, he suggests this will properly integrate the assets into the estate. Next, Walker proposes creating a virtual asset instruction letter (or VAIL) that will list all of your online accounts and assets. Included in this list will be the web addresses, user names, and passwords to give your designated representative access these accounts.
While it is important to include these assets in an estate plan, simply choosing a dependable and trustworthy representative may not be enough to secure your digital assets after you are gone. Even with a VAIL list, digital assets may be lost if the username/password is changed. Additionally, a VAIL does not resolve the problem that digital assets are expiring licenses. The best solution to this problem is to create a Digital Asset Protection Trust that will form the accounts in the name of a trust so that when you die, the entity that owns the license is still in existence. For more information on protecting Digital Assets, consult your Florida Digital Asset Trust Lawyer for guidance before your digital death day.