Social Media Accounts After Death
In our last post we discussed digital assets and how to plan for them. This week let’s focus on a specific digital asset that has become a part of almost every client’s estate: social media accounts. Below is a brief description of Facebook and Twitter’s policies for deceased member’s accounts.
Facebook – Allows only verified immediate family members to request the removal of an account through a valid request. A valid request requires providing them with the name of the deceased person, the date of death, and proof of death like an obituary or death certificate.
Twitter – Asks for deceased person’s username, a copy of the death certificate, government issued ID of the person contacting Twitter, and a signed statement to Twitter, with the contact person’s name, email, current contact information, relationship to the deceased person’s estate, a deactivation request, and obituary.
So how can one prepare to simplify this process of Social Media Accounts After Death? As we discussed before, here are some options:
1. Leave a list with immediate family or your trustee or fiduciary with your username and password for all your accounts.
2. Plan ahead by choosing a trustee, or fiduciary to administer the estate and include relevant language for digital assets within your estate planning documents. Twitter’s policy requires a relationship to the deceased person’s estate. This is normally a trustee or personal representative in Florida. It’s possible that without this designation they may not deal with a beneficiary in case there are other beneficiaries.