An article by Dennis Kennedy in this month’s ABA Journal poses some interesting questions about our "digital estate". Keeping in mind that the "e" in email stands for "evidence" and "eternal", it is a sure bet that our on line presence will outlive us. That will apply to our email accounts, social networks, and all of the public, private and commercial places where we leave a record of our coming and going on line.
The idea of how to deal with all of these records and accounts is indeed a novel one and the author suggests a number of ways in which we can augment traditional estate planning with new concepts of dealing with our digital demise.
Your lawblogger has a slightly different take on this issue, however. The internet has been around for some time now and millions of us have regular dealings on Face book and with thousands of businesses and public agencies. I can honestly say that I have not encountered a single problem in any estate relating to digital records, at least nothing that doesn’t fall within the normal record keeping which will leave our fiduciaries and relatives suitably informed of our on line comings and goings. Perhaps some of you have a different experience but it would seem that the problems of a "digital estate" are extremely rare if they do exist at all at this point.