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Digital life after death

Private client practitioners, with their Wills Act 1837 and the Administration of Estates Act 1925, have never been viewed as members of the profession with cutting edge problems.

24 September 2014

But no longer,
as we are now dealing with the
relatively new issue of the
digital estate.

Billions of people worldwide use the internet and a remarkable 70 per cent of them do so every day. Those of us who are over 40 will remember when we didn’t know anyone who used it. Many confidently predicted that it would never take off. But, as we now know, the only constant in technology is change. The advent of smart technologies, phones, tablets and online businesses has all contributed phenomenal changes to how people live
their lives and, by implication,
the nature of their estate at
their death.

The addiction to social media presents an executor with new and difficult problems. They must deal with Facebook and Twitter on behalf of the deceased. There may not be an immediate financial risk, but there is huge sentimental value to the family. As photo albums and diaries are r...

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