Recognizing the ever-growing concern over managing online accounts of deceased loved ones, Google has changed the options on their support page regarding access to a deceased user's account. We're glad to see that Google allows survivors to manage their loved one's accounts in the event of death, especially when clear instructions may not have been left behind by the deceased. You may visit the updated page to review the various options available to family members or those individuals interested in planning their own estates.
Earlier this month our blog discussed Facebook offering a new feature called: "Legacy Contact." This feature may also help your loved ones secure your account after your death and allow you to make specific designations about your account.
Although many state legislatures are attempting to define how digital accounts may be managed after the user passes away, we believe that it is a good step forward that Google and Facebook are making in helping families gain a better understanding of the available options for digital asset management.
For additional information on estate planning and digital asset management in Houston, please click here to visit my website.
See Gerry W. Beyer, Google Creates New Options to Access Account of Deceased User,Wills, Trusts, and Estates Prof Blog, August 13, 2015.
See David Shulman, Google Updates Page Regarding a Deceased User’s Account, South Florida Estate Planning Blog, July 30, 2015.