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Nevada estate planning should include digital world

Facebook, PayPal, Google and other digital accounts may all be familiar to readers in Nevada. What may not be as familiar is the need to include the existence of these types of accounts in estate planning documents. This is because of the ever-growing digital world that may be storing important information and valuable assets.

In fact, a recent report says, those of us in Nevada and elsewhere now have not only information on-line but also money, gaming accounts and photos. In many cases, the information stored in these accounts is important to heirs. This is why their distribution should be included in estate planning documents.

The first important step, the report says, is to create a list of accounts and passwords. This should be made available to the executor of an estate who will be tasked with dealing with the information and assets on-line. However, it is important to note that the passwords should not be included in an estate planning document such as a will, because that information will be made public at the time of probate. Rather, an on-line safe deposit box or more traditional safe may be useful for this type of information.

Estate planning contains many aspects that those of us in Nevada may find confusing. This is why it is important for people to consider all aspects of their estate, including the digital world, when creating a will or trust document. This effort will help to ensure that heirs and executors understand how an individual wishes to have their estate distributed when they pass away.

Source: The New York Times, "Estate Planning Is Important for Your Online Assets, Too," Anne Eisenberg, May 26, 2013.

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