Digital Assets & the New Normal

Grace Cleveland
Wills & Estates

Digital assets can have monetary value, sentimental value, or simply contain content that is important for one reason or another. Some common examples of digital assets include:

• email accounts (Gmail, Hotmail, iCloud, Yahoo, etc.);

• cloud storage accounts (Dropbox, GoogleDocs, etc.);

• social media accounts (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.);

• online gaming accounts (Xbox Live, World of Warcraft or similar online games, Internet poker, etc.);

• subscription media accounts (Netflix, Spotify, newspapers with paywalls, etc.);

• credit card reward and loyalty programs (AirMiles, Petro-Canada, HBC Rewards, etc.);

• digital currencies (Bitcoin, BlackCoin, Ethereum, etc.); and

• other electronic commerce accounts (eBay, PayPal, Kickstarter, GoFundMe, etc.).

When you become incapable or pass away, your attorney (acting under your Power of Attorney) or your executor (acting under your Will) need to have the express authority to administer your digital assets, and they will need to know what your intentions include. For example, who do you want to inherit your Bitcoin? Should your Facebook profile be memorialized? Where can your usernames and passwords be found?

Although digital assets once constituted a peripheral position in the estate planning process, these items should now form part of every estate planning discussion. Call or email us today to find out more!

This article is intended for information purposes only and should not be taken as the provision of legal advice. Grace C. Cleveland is a lawyer with the law firm of Cleveland Doan LLP and can be reached at (604)536-5002 or