We live in a world dominated by ongoing technological change however the cogs in our legal system often don’t turn fast enough to keep up.
Here are two tools you can use to keep your estate plan relevant in the 21st century.
Passwords and digital assets
Think about all the websites and online applications you use daily requiring secure login details that only you know, including:
- Online banking
- Personal email
- Cloud storage of family photos
In the event you were unable to look after your affairs, you may want a trusted person to have access to these details, however for security purposes you would never disclose your passwords.
How can you achieve this without compromising your security?
LastPass is a US based firm that allows you to store your password details and important documents securely via their digital vault. They recognise their members may want this information to be available to those they trust should something happen to them.
As a result they allow the account holder to nominate an emergency access contact person who can apply for access to your account, the idea being that your nominated representative would be able to access this information if something unfortunate happened to you. There are of course robust additional security measures in place that we won’t cover here, but you may find this to be a practical option.
Tools to help you stay financially well organised
Keeping track of our personal finances can be difficult at the best of times, but what if someone else had to take over managing your affairs and you weren’t around to provide any guidance?
You wouldn’t be able to tell them about that bank account on the side for your “play money” or the holiday fund. What about those IAG shares you received years ago but can never find the paperwork for?
Would it be difficult for Executor of Power of Attorney to get a full understanding of your affairs? Would they be rifling through old filing cabinets and following a never-ending paper trail?
Imagine the convenience of having all of your assets, liabilities and important documents stored in one secure location in the cloud, with values updated in real time accessible via a mobile app. It could include:
- All your bank accounts
- Term deposits
- Share holdings
- Superannuation accounts
- Investment properties
- Trust deeds, insurance policies, utility bills, videos & heartfelt letters for family & friends
If you utilise this service and something unexpected happened to you, your Executor or Power of Attorney could very quickly have full visibility across your affairs. They would simply need to speak with your financial adviser who also has access to your personal wealth portal.
We have chosen to partner with MyProsperity, however it is also worth looking into other providers in this space including Moneysoft. We encourage you to investigate which service (if any) is best suited to your needs.
Technology has significantly changed the way we operate and created additional digital assets that need to be accounted for as part of a robust estate plan.
Using the right tools effectively not only helps you stay financially well organised now, but allows your trusted loved ones to seamlessly take over the management of your affairs should something unexpected happen to you.
Is your estate plan still relevant in our modern world?
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is general in nature and should not be considered personal advice. A number of service providers have been mentioned within this article however this should not be taken as an endorsement or recommendation. We strongly encourage you to undertake independent research to determine the providers that best suit your needs.