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Why estate plans need to be updated

On Behalf of | Feb 5, 2019 | Probate & Estate Planning |

In the modern world, more and more assets are becoming digitized. From photo albums and record collections to stocks and cryptocurrencies, estate plans need to account for the digital sphere if they are going to meet the goals of families in Georgia. Managing digital assets in an estate plan can be challenging for a few reasons. Not only can they be hard to find, but they may require a password or some type of digital signature to access. Ownership rights are also not always clearly defined.

Digital assets, which are the information on devices and not the devices themselves, are important in estate planning because they can have real monetary and sentimental value. When a spouse with access to these assets unexpectedly passes away, the other spouse may not know what to do. Everything from bank accounts to online media collections may remain inaccessible.

The Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (RUFADAA), which has passed in almost every state, provides guidelines for estate planners that handle digital assets. The law attempts to deal with many complicated issues related to licensing agreements, terms of service, and other contracts that affect the ownership and transfer of digital assets. Families with small businesses can be especially affected by these issues.

For families with estate plans that don’t yet include accumulated digital assets, making updates as soon as possible is crucial. An attorney that practices in probate and estate planning can help their client amend documents so that beneficiaries can actually access important financial and sentimental property in the digital world. There are many different legal tools that can accomplish this goal, and it’s the job of the lawyer to stay updated on any changes made to the law.


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