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Paper Calls For Regulation Of What Happens To Digital Assets After Death

Posted on by Katie Synor

With more of people’s lives spent online, the issue of what to do in the event of their death with their digital assets is an ever more-pressing question.

According to a paper written by a University of Illinois law professor and released last week, federal law needs to define what happens to someone’s “digital afterlife” and it needs to play a stronger role in regulating social networking sites, allowing users to determine the fate of what they own digitally.

Jason Mazzone, an Illini law professor argues that social networking sites are unlikely to adopt user-friendly policies for what happens to accounts upon a user’s death so a federal statute could help impose requirements on those sites to help users take some control of their accounts.

Mazzone points out that although social media sites like Facebook oftentimes set up memorial accounts for users who have died, they keep control of the content on their servers and ultimately, it is not their content to control. When someone passes away, these same issues affect email and online accounts as well.

If you need help planning your estate and what will happen when you die, contact Troy attorney Kathryn Synor today for a free, initial consultation.

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