Sheryl Dennis was recently quoted in the March 12, 2015 issue of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. Attorney Dennis was consulted on digital legacy planning as it pertains to a new Facebook feature that allows individuals to choose a “legacy contact” to manage their account in the event of their death.
The article, “Estate planners welcome Facebook’s new legacy feature,” by Pat Murphy discusses the importance of accounting for your digital assets as part of your estate planning efforts. With so much of our lives online, it is essential to consider what will become of this presence once we are no longer around to manage it.
Previously, Facebook would “memorialize” accounts after being notified of a user’s passing. While the page would still be live and viewable, it could not be formally managed.
With Facebook’s new “legacy contact” feature, a person can be designated to manage an account, accept friend requests, update profile photos and post information.
Lawyers Weekly asked Attorney Dennis to weigh in:
“Wellesley estate planning attorney Sheryl J. Dennis says she would certainly advise her clients to take advantage of Facebook’s new feature, noting it’s often very difficult to get online companies to act in accordance with the wishes of a personal representative or an agent under a durable power of attorney once a person is either incapacitated or deceased.
‘If this actually allows more control to the descendants and to the personal representative, then that is very good,’ Dennis says.”
The entire article is available on Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.