eWill ensures that your digital assets do not become lossets.
Unfortunately, the conventional 3-step process of transferring your legacy to your heirs – the physical will, the clunky probate stage, and the eventual distribution of your estate by the executor – does not work for your digital assets. It won’t work in time for immediately-needed assets such as online bank accounts or a business email. In the worst case, the conventional process might not work at all - meaning that the digital legacy intended to go to your loved ones and business colleagues may never reach them. Imagine what would happen to a small business if it lost its domain name because no-one was able to re-register it. There is a real risk that the priceless digital assets of your lifetime end up floating around in cyber-space for all of eternity, or more likely with the global platform-owner. Either way, your valuable assets will have become real lossets.
The conventional inheritance process works for distributing physical assets such as real estate or family heirlooms, although it is slow, messy and expensive. It also puts a heavy burden of responsibility on your executor, who is normally someone you should be sparing any added pain. For the last 500 years or more, this conventional process for transferring inheritance has worked, more or less.
However, it no longer works in the digital age. For many digital services – think bank accounts, business emails, domain renewals, web-sites, phone numbers, etc. – the ability to access and the right to use them (that is, in effect, digital ownership) must be transferred immediately. Transferring these assets cannot wait for 5-or-so months while the cumbersome legal procedure of probate takes its course.
Likewise, the ancient legal structure behind probate does not easily allow for the “legal” transfer of ownership of a complex portfolio of digital assets that are managed by numerous third-party corporations all over the globe. The transfer of your digital assets to your intended beneficiaries is of course fully legitimate – it’s just that under the conventional process and local laws the transfers will be delayed, or maybe even indefinitely blocked.