Florida Estate Planning: Safeguard your Digital Assets with a Prenuptial Agreement
Digital assets are unlike the other assets that you include in your will or trust. Some people forget even to address them, which can be a huge mistake. Knowing how your digital assets will be treated upon your death (or even divorce) can help you better understand what can happen. If you are getting married, one option to protect them is through a prenuptial agreement. Otherwise, it would help if you addressed them in your estate plan. To understand more about Florida estate planning and digital assets, speak with an experienced West Palm Beach estate planning attorney.
What Are Digital Assets?
Defining a digital asset can be complicated. As technology continues to evolve, some digital assets may not even be developed yet. Digital assets are typically ones that don’t have any tangible qualities. They usually have sentimental value, and some have an economic value. Think about things such as digital photos, videos, and other audiovisual media. Computer files and folders are other examples. Social media accounts, email accounts, and other online services can be digital assets.
In some situations, digital assets can have significant economic value. Do you have any intellectual property, such as a patent, trademark, or copyright? Some people make a comfortable living working online. Websites, blogs, and even social media accounts can be ways that people make money.
Accessing these accounts may be restricted. Individual ownership means these assets are stored in one user’s name and can only be accessed with a username and password. The accounts may even contain information on whether they can be divided upon death.
How a Prenuptial Agreement Works for Digital Assets
Prenuptial agreements dictate how certain assets are treated during your marriage. It can address both existing accounts as well as information for accounts not yet created. You can state which assets belong to who and who has complete ownership of your digital assets. Many people also include something that says how these digital assets should be divided in the event you get divorced or pass away. Your prenup can be even more detailed, discussing what access each spouse has. For example, an account may belong only to one spouse, but the other spouse can legally access it.
Your prenuptial agreement can also assign a monetary value to certain assets, including digital assets. This is an opportunity for you to discuss digital assets with your partner before you are legally married.
Digital Assets in Your Estate Plan
Addressing your digital assets in your estate plan is always a good idea. You need to make provisions for them in your will or trust, especially if you want to make sure a particular person inherits them and/or has access to these accounts after your death.
Some accounts or services may allow you to designate someone to take over the account in the event of your death. For example, Facebook offers the ability to name a legacy contact. This person will be able to look after your account if it’s memorialized.
Contact a Florida Estate Planning Attorney
If you need assistance with protecting your digital assets, it’s best to speak with an experienced Florida estate planning attorney. It’s helpful if you can make an inventory list of your assets before your meeting too. To learn more about how an estate planning attorney can help, contact the Law Offices of Larry E. Bray, P.A., today to schedule an initial consultation.