Digital Estate Planning

Digital assets are increasingly becoming more important in our lives. This is why they need to be considered and included in your estate planning.

So what are can you do, and what are your options?


How to prepare my Social media accounts


How to prepare my Facebook account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my Facebook account when I die?

You can either choose a friend to look after your account, by nominating them as your legacy contact, or request for your Facebook account to be permanently deleted after you pass away. You can set up your legacy contact by navigating to Facebook Settings and click on Manage Account.

What is Facebook Legacy Contact?

Your Facebook Legacy Contact is the person, friend or family, whom you have nominated to administer your Facebook profile after your death. Once nominated your legacy contact will be notified of this. They will only be contacted again regarding this once your account has been memorialised.

What happens if I have not nominated a legacy contact?

If you were to pass away without nominating a legacy contact, your family and friends will need to notify Facebook of your passing and request that your account is memorialised.

What if I don’t want my account to be memorialised?

If you would prefer for your Facebook account to be permanently deleted after you pass away you can either select this option by navigating to the Facebook Settings and clicking on Manage Account, or by letting your immediate family know of your wishes. Only your immediate family can request for the page to be deleted rather than memorialised by completing Facebook’s Special Request for Deceased Person’s Account form.

How does Facebook find out if someone has died?

If someone dies, their family or friends can request for their Facebook profile to become memorialised. The requestor will need to provide some proof that the person has died, such as a death certificate. This will effectively freeze the page in time.

How do you notify Facebook of a death?

Facebook provided the following instructions:
1. First, click the flower or star in the right-hand corner of the page,
2. Then click “help”,
3. Then “visit the help centre”,
4. Next, type in the search box “deceased user delete”,
5. Then choose memorialize or remove your account.

What happens when my account has been memorialised?

Once a Facebook account has been memorialised, the word Remembering will be shown next to the person’s name on their profile. Depending on the privacy settings friends can still share on the timeline. Any previous content shared by the person, for example, photos or posts, remain on Facebook and will be visible to whoever they were shared with.


How to prepare my Instagram account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my Instagram profile after I die?

Instagram will memorialise the accounts of a person who has passed away once it is notified. Unlike Facebook, Instagram does not offer an option for you to prepare your account as part of your estate planning. Not will Instagram give anyone access to your account. However, your executor can request for your account to be removed. Therefore it is important to include Instagram in your estate planning.

How does Instagram find out that someone has died?

You can report the account of a person who has passed away by completing the Report a deceased person’s account for memorialisation on Instagram contact form. Instagram will require proof of death, such as a link to an obituary or news article before they memorialise an account. Once confirmed Instagram will memorialise the account.

What does it mean for an account to memorialise?

A memorialised Instagram account appears the same as any other Instagram account which has not been memorialised. Instagram will not allow anyone to login to a memorialised account, nor will the memorialised account appear in public spaces, for example, the explore section. Once an account is memorialised it is effective frozen in time. That is, no further changes or additions can be made to the account including photos, comments or any other attributes.

You can find more information on the restrictions and limitations of a memorialised profile here.

What if I want my Instagram profile to be deleted after I pass away?

Only your estate executor or administrator can request for your account to be removed from Instagram once you have passed away. An that is why it is important to make sure your wishes are clear in your estate planning.

Instagram will require the following information:
1. The deceased person’s birth certificate;
2. The deceased person’s death certificate; and
3. Proof of authority under local law that you are the lawful representative of the deceased person or his/her estate.


How to prepare my Twitter before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my Twitter account when I die?

Long story short is nothing. Twitter does not deactivate a deceased user’s account automatically. However, your verified family members and executors will need to request for your profile to be deactivated.

How does Twitter find out if someone has died?

Twitter does not actively try and find accounts of potentially deceased users. However, your verified family members and executors will need to request for your profile to be deactivated. If you do not want your account to be deactivated, let your loved ones know not to request for this.

Does Twitter memorialise deceased accounts?

Twitter does not have any policies to memorialise deceased accounts. However, only accounts reported for deactivation will be deactivated. If you want for your account to be memorialised let your loved ones know so they do not request for your account to be deactivated.

How do you notify Twitter of a deceased account?

You can use the “I want to request the deactivation of a deceased or incapacitated person’s account” form to request for the deactivation of a deceased or incapacitated person’s account. Once submitted, Twitter will contact you via email to advise.

What information do you need to supply Twitter?

Twitters needs the following information:

  1. Twitter Username of the account owner
  2. Full name of the account owner
  3. Additional Information (optional)
  4. Relationship to user
  5. Your full name
  6. Email address

How to prepare my Snapchat account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my Snapchat account when I die?

Unfortunately, Snapchat does not offer any solutions for you to prepare your account prior to your death. Snapchat is happy however to remove the account of a deceased person.

How does Snapchat find out if someone has died?

Snapcha relies on other members to notify it of a person’s passing. Once notified, Snapchat will validate and is happy to close the deceased person’s account.

How do you notify Snapchat of a death?

You can notify Snapchat by contacting them directly through their online Contact Us form. You will need to follow these steps:

  • Report a safety concern
  • Someone else’s Snapchat account
  • “something else?” YES
  • The person passed away

You will need to provide the Snapchat username of deceased, and a copy of their death certificate.


How to prepare my professional accounts


How to prepare my Google account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my Gmail or Google account after I die?

Google introduced the Inactive Account Manager as a way for users to set up their succession plan. Users can share parts or all of their account data, and notify friends and family after a certain period of time.

How does Google detect inactivity?

You can set the period after which Google should consider your account inactive in your Inactive Account Manager portal. By default, this is set to 3 months before the account is tagged inactive.

Does Google try to contact you before they take any action?

Google will attempt to contact you using your recovery email if it has been set up. You will need to supply a mobile number and a recovery email with which Google can attempt to contact you with before they take any actions on your account.

Can I nominate someone to get my Google data after I die?

You can nominate up to 10 people to be notified when your account becomes inactive in your Inactive Account Manager. Included in this, you can nominate to grant each person access to some, all or none of your Google information. Your Google information includes data such as your Gmail account, GDrive content or YouTube profile.

Similarly, you can set up a customised autoreply be sent out after your account becomes inactive. And finally, you nominate if this autoreply is to only be sent out to people in your contact list.

Can I request that my Google account be permanently deleted?

Via the Inactive Account Manager, you can decide if you want your account to be permanently deleted. If you have nominated for your data to be made available to a nominated person, Google will allow them an additional 3 months to download your data before it is permanently deleted.

Please note, your account data includes all of your public data such as YouTube videos, Blogger Blogs, or Google activities.

How do I set up my Inactive Account Manager profile?

You need a Google Account to set up your Inactive Account Manager.

What happens if I have not set up an Inactive Account Manager profile?

Google allows your immediate family or legal representative to submit a request for access to Google. The request can ask Google to close your account, to refund funds in your name or to give them access to data in your account.

Your immediate family or legal representative can submit a request to Google. Within the request, they can ask Google to close your account, to refund funds in your name or to give them access to data in your account.

What information do I need to supply to request closure of a deceased person’s account?

You will need to supply the following information:

  1. Full name + email address of the deceased
  2. Full name + email address of the requestor
  3. Your relationship to the deceased, i.e. immediate family, or executor
  4. Your country + zip or postcode
  5. Date of death
  6. Accounts you wish to delete, i.e. Google and/or YouTube
  7. A government-issued ID (e.g. Driver’s License) in English
  8. Copy of the death certificate
  9. Any additional information or documentation that can help Google analyse your request.

It is important to include your wishes regarding your Google and YouTube accounts in your estate planning. Your will can then be used by your nominated executor to take actions after you have passed away.

What information do I need to gain access to funds from a deceased user’s account?

You will need to supply the following information:

  1. Full name + email address of the deceased
  2. Full name + email address of the requestor
  3. Your address, city, country + zip or postcode
  4. Date of death
  5. Accounts you wish to withdraw from, i.e. AdSense or Wallet
  6. Desired payee name
  7. The court documents confirming you/re authority over the estate
  8. A government-issued ID (e.g. Driver’s License) in English
  9. Copy of the death certificate
  10. Any additional information or documentation that can help Google analyse your request.

It is important to include your wishes regarding your Google and YouTube accounts in your estate planning. Your will can then be used by your nominated executor to take actions after you have passed away.

What information do I need to obtain data from a deceased person’s account?

You will need to supply the following information:

  1. Full name + email address of the deceased
  2. Full name + email address of the requestor
  3. Your address, city, country + zip or postcode
  4. Date of death
  5. The information you wish to gain access to, e.g. Blogger, Drive, Gmail, Google Photos, YouTube
  6. A government-issued ID (e.g. Driver’s License) in English
  7. Copy of the death certificate
  8. Any additional information or documentation that can help Google analyse your request.

It is important to include your wishes regarding your Google and YouTube accounts in your estate planning. Your will can then be used by your nominated executor to take actions after you have passed away.


How to prepare my LinkedIn account before I die

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my LinkedIn account when I die?

Unfortunately, LinkedIn does not offer any solutions for you to prepare your account prior to your death. LinkedIn is happy however to remove the account of a deceased person.

How does LinkedIn find out if someone has died?

LinkedIn relies on colleagues, classmates, or loved ones to notify it of a person’s passing. Once notified, LinkedIn will validate notice and will remove the deceased person’s profile.

How do you notify LinkedIn of a death?

You can notify LinkedIn by completing the Request removal of a deceased member’s LinkedIn profile contact form.

How do I delete a deceased person’s LinkedIn account?

LinkedIn requires the following information:
– The member’s name
– The URL to their LinkedIn profile
– Your relationship to them
– Member’s email address
– The date they passed away
– Link to obituary
– The company they most recently worked at


How to prepare my Points Programs


How to prepare my FlyBuys points before I die

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my FlyBuy points when I die?

Unfortunately, FlyBuys does not offer any solutions for you to prepare your account prior to your death. FlyBuys Australia’s Term and Conditions states that points cannot be transferred, sold or given to any other person however FlyBuys New Zealand, which has the same Terms and Conditions, does have an FAQ example where they demonstrate a willingness to transfer the point accrued by a deceased account holder.

How does FlyBuys find out if someone has died?

FlyBuys relies on the family members or estate executors to notify it of a person’s passing. According to the FlyBuys FAQ, they offer options on accounts for a deceased person, namely close account and transfer the points, or in the case of multiple cardholders to remove the deceased.

How do you notify FlyBuys of a death?

You can contact FlyBuys by either calling them on 13 11 16 or by mail to the address listed in the Contact Us page.

How do I delete a deceased person’s FlyBuys account?

Please contact FlyBuys on either 13 11 16, or by mail to request the closure of a deceased person’s account. If there are multiple account holders and the other account holders have not given their approval you will need to supply evidence that you have the authority to act on the estate.


How to prepare my Frequent Flyer Points before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to Qantas Frequent Flyer Points when you die?

According to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Terms and Conditions all Qantas Frequent Flyer points are forfeited after the death of the member and cannot be accessed or transferred.

Are Qantas Frequent Flyer Points transferrable?

Yes. You can transfer your points to an eligible family member any time. There are some minor restrictions on this like limiting maximum points transfers within a 12 months period to 600,000 points, however, it can easily be done via your online member portal.

What happens to Virgin Velocity Frequent Flyer Points when you die?

According to the Virgin Velocity Frequent Flyer Terms and Conditions, Velocity Frequent Flyer points can be administered by an estate administrator or executor for a period of 12 months after the passing of a member.

How do Airlines find out if someone has died?

There is no way for airlines to know when someone has passed away, and therefore they rely on loved ones to notify them of a person’s passing.


How to prepare my Online Shopping accounts


How to prepare my Amazon account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

Note: this includes Amazon.com or Amazon.com.au; Audible.com; Kindle; Amazon Music; Amazon Drive; Prime Photos; Amazon Appstore purchases; customer profile including reviews, discussion posts and customer images; account history (including credit card information, order history, etc.); Gift Cards; and Amazon Web Services (AWS).

What happens to my Amazon account after I die?

There are no mechanisms in place to put in place a succession plan for your Amazon account. There are in fact valid arguments that you do not have the right to pass some digital ownership. However, your executor and loved ones can contact Amazon to make alternative arrangements.

But is there a workaround?

The short answer is maybe! In other words, Amazon allows you to share some purchases with your family by setting up an Amazon Household. Amazon Household makes it easy for you and your family to share Prime Benefits and Digital Content (such as eBooks, audiobooks, apps and games).

What is Amazon Household?

Amazon Household allows for the sharing of Prime Benefits and Digital Content between two adults, up to four teens and up to four child profiles. Therefore making it easier to share your Amazon content. Go here to set up your Amazon Household.

What are the sharable Amazon Prime Benefits?

Shareable Amazon Prime Benefits include Shipping Benefits (for example, Prime Shipping, Prime Now and AmazonFresh) and Digital Benefits (for example Prime Video, Prime Reading, Amazon Photos, Amazon First Reads, Discounts and Exclusives) as well as Prime Early Access, Amazon Photos and Twitch Prime. For more information please visit Share Your Amazon Prime Benefits.

What is Amazon Digital Content?

Shareable Digital Contents are eBooks; audiobooks; apps and games on your Amazon devices. However, there are a number of things that you cannot share. For example the Music in your Music Library, Kindle Unlimited titles, Prime Video and Prime Reading. For more information visit About Amazon Households and Family Library.

Can I remove an adult from my Amazon Household?

Sometimes life does not go to plan. Amazon lets you leave or remove an adult from an Amazon Household. In other words, you can remove a deceased family member. You can achieve this by firstly going to Manage Your Household in Your Account and secondly selecting Remove under their name.

What happens to my Alexa Routine?

Maybe it is because Alexa is relatively new but Amazon does not appear to have a succession plan for Alexa or Alexa Routines. In the meantime, however, you can delete an existing Alexa Routine by navigating to the Routines section of your Alexa app and selecting an Enabled routine. For more information please visit Create Alexa Routines for Smart Devices.

Can I request the closure of a deceased Amazon account?

You can request the closure of a deceased account by contacting Amazon using their Contact Us form. Please note that once an account has been deleted none of its content can be accessed any more. Content that is erased includes Amazon Music, Amazon Drive, Prime Photos, Amazon Appstore purchases, customer profile including reviews, discussion posts and customer images or account history including credit card information, order history, etc. You can find out more information by visiting About Closing Your Account.


How to prepare my Apple iTunes account before I die

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my iTunes Music library after I die?

There are no mechanisms in place to put in place a succession plan for your iTunes Music Libary. There are in fact valid arguments that you do not have the right to pass that ownership on. For example, this Apple Communities conversation, or a number of other articles which can be easily found on Google on this topic.

But is there a workaround?

The short answer is maybe! Apple allows you to share your purchases with members of your family by setting up Family Sharing. Family Sharing makes it easy for you and your family to share iTunes, Apple Books and App Store; an Apple Music family plan; and an iCloud storage plan. You can also choose to share photo albums and family calendars on top of sharing your location within the family.

What is Apple Family Sharing?

Family Sharing is the mechanisms with which Apple allows the sharing of iTunes, Apple Books and App Store purchases; an Apple Music family subscription; a single iCloud storage plan; and more. One adult, the organiser, chooses the features and invites the members that make up the Family Sharing profile. From there everyone within that family gets access to everything else purchased by other members. Go here to Set up Family Sharing.

What happens to my Apple products after I die? (iPod; iPhone; iPad; Apple Watch; AirPods; Apple TV)

Unfortunately, there are no Apple policies that directly address the need to access the Apple Products of a deceased owner. There is an example of Apple Communities conversations where the questioner is asked to bring, in this case, the Apple Watch into the store with a copy of the death certificate in order to get access to the device.

What happens to my Apple Mac products after I die? (MacBook; Air; Pro; iMac; Mac Mini)

Again, unfortunately, there is no Apple policy that we can point to regarding obtaining access to the Apple Products of a deceased owner. There is, unfortunately, an example of Apple Communities conversations where the questioner is pointed to the standard process of wiping clean an Apple product before a sale as a means of obtaining access without the password.


How to prepare my deceased eBay account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my eBay account when I die?

Unfortunately, eBay does not offer any solutions for you to prepare your account prior to your death. eBay is happy however to remove the account of a deceased person.

How does eBay find out if someone has died?

eBay relies on family members or executor/s to notify it of a person’s passing. Once notified, eBay will validate and is happy to close the deceased person’s account.

How do you notify eBay of a death?

You can notify eBay by contacting them directly. eBay’s contact information can be easily found via Google.


How to prepare my PayPal account before I die?

Digital Estate Planning
Digital Estate Planning

What happens to my PayPal account when I die?

Unfortunately, PayPal does not offer any solutions for you to prepare your account prior to your death. PayPal is happy however to close the account of a deceased person and refund unclaimed monies.

How does PayPal find out if someone has died?

PayPal relies on the executor to notify it of a person’s passing and request for either the account closure or a refund of unclaimed monies.

How do you notify PayPal of a death?

According to the PayPal Help Center, you will need to fax a number of documents and instructions requesting for account closure to 02 8223 9508. However, you will need to submit a Request for refund of unclaimed monies form to access funds in the account.

How do I delete a deceased person’s PayPal account?

  • PayPal requires the following information:
    A cover sheet that states that the account holder is deceased and instructions for the action you wish for us to take on the PayPal account (please provide the email address of the account in the cover letter, if known);
  • A copy of your valid government-issued photo ID; and
  • A copy of the accountholder’s Death Certificate.

Are debts forgiven at death?

There are a number of scenarios and legislation which have an impact on the answer to this question. It is up to the executor of the estate to identify and make payments on payable liabilities.

What happens to a closed PayPal account?

Once a PayPal account is closed down it cannot be reopened meaning all the transaction history is lost.