What happens to your social networking accounts after your death?

Today, so much of our lives are online. We have email accounts, blogs and different social networking accounts for work, keeping in touch with loved ones and exploring our interests. So, what happens to these accounts when we die? Here’s some insight from an estate planning attorney in New Jersey.

First of all, every digital account has its own policy of how to deal with this issue, so it really depends on who you have your accounts with. Here are some of the most popular social networks along with their solutions.

  • Facebook: Great for keeping in touch with family and friends, and sharing our own lives, Facebook is actually on target to have more dead people than live members online by the year 2130. The company gives friends and family the opportunity to turn a loved one’s page into a memorial page or delete it completely according to their preferences. This requires a death certificate and a link to the timeline and email address of the deceased.
  • Twitter: Currently, Twitter doesn’t allow any access to the deceased’s accounts by friends or family, but they will allow an authorized person to deactivate the account. This requires a death certificate, government-issued ID, proof of relationship to the user, evidence the account belongs to the deceased (if the user name and given name don’t match) and links to a public obituary for proof of death.
  • Google accounts: While this may change in the future, Google doesn’t guarantee that they will give a loved one access to accounts held by a deceased user, but they will consider their case. They will need to submit a death certificate, government-issued ID, your full name, Gmail address and physical mailing address.
  • PayPal: While not a social network, PayPal accounts will also have to be closed down in the event of a death and as part of fulfilling their estate plan. The executor of the Last Will and Testament will have to send in copies of required information in order to close the account, including the death certificate, proof of executorship, a cover letter for the request and photo identification of the executor.

Manage your digital assets and online presence with comprehensive estate planning 

Online accounts and digital assets are an important part of your life and should be managed effectively and in line with your personal specifications in the event of your death. If you would like to ensure that these assets are properly protected though comprehensive estate planning, Frank R. Campisano can assist you each step of the way.

For peace of mind estate planning or advice on creating your Last Will and Testament, please contact Frank R. Campisano or visit our website today at https://www.scclegal.com/


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