Afterlife in the Cloud: Managing a Digital Estate

5 Hastings and Science Technology Law Journal 210, 2013

36 Pages Posted: 11 Apr 2013 Last revised: 3 Jun 2013

Date Written: April 10, 2013


The rapid development of electronic devices and widespread access the internet has ushered in a new age: the digital age. The digital age has changed the manner in which assets are created and transferred. This digitalization of wealth challenges the effectiveness and efficiencies of traditional estate planning mechanisms. Additionally, modified estate planning techniques and the development of digital estate planning services have created serious privacy, security, and efficiency concerns for the transfer and management of digital estates. As such, creative and innovative digital estate planning solutions are required to ensure the privacy, security, and proper disposition of digital estates. However, because the problems facing digital estate planning are complex, a combination of legislative action and improved online service agreements are essential to solving the digital estate dilemma. Until digital asset ownership and transferability questions are resolved, digital estate planning will remain in flux as traditional estate planning appears ill suited for the management and disbursement of digital assets.

Keywords: Youtube, Twitter, law, legal, contract, digital, estate, planning, Facebook, wills, trusts, social media, digital assets, asset management, privacy

Suggested Citation

Hopkins, Jamie, Afterlife in the Cloud: Managing a Digital Estate (April 10, 2013). 5 Hastings and Science Technology Law Journal 210, 2013, Available at SSRN:

Jamie Hopkins (Contact Author)

The American College ( email )

Bryn Mawr, PA 19010
United States
610-526-1441 (Phone)


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