Your online legacy

 The internet is now used by many people to make life easier. You can shop online, download music and films, connect with friends through social media websites and communicate instantly via email. But what will happen to your online accounts following your death? 

The Executors of your Will can deal with your bank accounts and investments but if your family does not have details of your online accounts, they may have difficulties gaining access or closing them down. This could mean that online services retain your banking details and could continue to take regular Direct Debits until your bank accounts are frozen or your family may not be able to recover items of sentimental value such as photographs stored on your social media pages. 

To save your family and loved ones time and trouble you should ensure that they have all of the information they need to deal with your online affairs when you are gone and we recommend that everyone prepares a directory of online assets. The directory does not need to be in any particular format but it should list all of the websites and online services to which you subscribe including email accounts, online shops and banks, gaming accounts, social media pages, professional directories and other miscellaneous websites you have signed up to. You should not leave details of any passwords or pin numbers, a list of online accounts will be enough. 

You may also wish to include instructions for what you would like to happen to your online accounts. Some online assets such as music and films cannot be passed on to others however social media accounts can sometimes be turned into memorial pages, shared email accounts can continue to be used by your spouse or partner and computer game characters can be passed to your fiends. 

Once you have prepared your online directory you should store it with your Will to keep it safe and of course, you should keep your directory up to date as you close accounts or subscribe to new websites. 

For more information regarding the above or any matter relating to Wills please contact Kate George on 01332 225335.