Articles Posted in Digital Asset Trust

What? Digital Asset Trust

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company WebCease is making waves in the probate and estate-planning community by helping attorneys and grieving families locate the deceased’s digital accounts.

CEO Glenn Williamson aims to be the first to provide this service to the growing market of families and attorneys trying to track down digital accounts. Williamson is banking on the need for this service to continue to grow as people continue to use digital accounts for shopping, social media and traveling.

WebCease searches across different vendors to determine if the deceased person had an account. WebCease then generates a report that outlines the location of the deceased’s accounts and includes instructions on how to transfer the account or shut it down. The company will not take any action to use the account, or attempt to login to the account.

For example, if a person has accrued points with Delta Airlines or Marriott Hotels, Webcease will find the account and alert the interested party as to what further steps and documents are needed to use the points. Williamson hopes the company’s services will help to save time for grieving families and reduce the possibility of identify theft.

Williamson first came up with the idea while visiting his LinkedIn page. The networking site suggested he connect with two people he knew had passed away. The idea further took root when Williamson’s mother died, and he himself had to search for her digital accounts. He documented these steps and realized the immense amount of time and work it took to track down these accounts.

It took him more than 20 hours or searching and researching the various companies’ terms of service. He eventually found his mom had 13 online accounts. This search allowed him to find more than 50,000 miles through United Airlines, which could be transferred or donated to another account.

Currently, about 60 percent of the process is automated. The rest of the work required the company to hire a team of researchers to compile the report. Williamson plans to hire six employees throughout the year. So far the company has targeted its service to probate attorneys and other estate-planning professionals. A full report costs $529, but the company is releasing a $99 pared-down version for consumers.

WebCease focuses on companies and websites with monetary value, such as travel sites, shopping websites, and social media sites that could hold sensitive information about the deceased person. Currently WebCease searches through about 70 websites and plans to add more as the company grows.

WebCease is a inventive solution for those who have not included their digital accounts in their estate-planning materials. According to Williamson, only 50 percent of Americans have a will and 90 percent don’t include digital assets in the will. For more information on Webcease or including digital information in your estate-planning materials contact the Law Office of David Goldman today at 904-685-1200.


Portland company WebCease is making waves in the probate and estate-planning community by helping attorneys and grieving families locate the deceased’s digital accounts.

CEO Glenn Williamson aims to be the first to provide this service to the growing market of families and attorneys trying to track down digital accounts. Williamson is banking on the need for this service to continue to grow as people continue to use digital accounts for shopping, social media and traveling.

WebCease searches across different vendors to determine if the deceased person had an account. WebCease then generates a report that outlines the location of the deceased’s accounts and includes instructions on how to transfer the account or shut it down. The company will not take any action to use the account, or attempt to login to the account.

For example, if a person has accrued points with Delta Airlines or Marriott Hotels, Webcease will find the account and alert the interested party as to what further steps and documents are needed to use the points. Williamson hopes the company’s services will help to save time for grieving families and reduce the possibility of identify theft.

Williamson first came up with the idea while visiting his LinkedIn page. The networking site suggested he connect with two people he knew had passed away. The idea further took root when Williamson’s mother died, and he himself had to search for her digital accounts. He documented these steps and realized the immense amount of time and work it took to track down these accounts.

It took him more than 20 hours or searching and researching the various companies’ terms of service. He eventually found his mom had 13 online accounts. This search allowed him to find more than 50,000 miles through United Airlines, which could be transferred or donated to another account.

Currently, about 60 percent of the process is automated. The rest of the work required the company to hire a team of researchers to compile the report. Williamson plans to hire six employees throughout the year. So far the company has targeted its service to probate attorneys and other estate-planning professionals. A full report costs $529, but the company is releasing a $99 pared-down version for consumers.

WebCease focuses on companies and websites with monetary value, such as travel sites, shopping websites, and social media sites that could hold sensitive information about the deceased person. Currently WebCease searches through about 70 websites and plans to add more as the company grows.

WebCease is a inventive solution for those who have not included their digital accounts in their estate-planning materials. According to Williamson, only 50 percent of Americans have a will and 90 percent don’t include digital assets in the will. For more information on Webcease or including digital information in your estate-planning materials contact the Law Office of David Goldman today at 904-685-1200.

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While video games have become increasingly realistic over the last few years, they still cannot compete with the virtual world reality of computer based Internet services. To some, SecondLife.com may seem like a game, but to others it really is a “second life.” Second Life is a website that allows users to interact with each other by downloading a software program. Each user creates an avatar that can resemble himself, a celebrity, or anyone they can imagine. All users interact, socialize, and even conduct business with each other in the same world known as “the grid.”

One of the unique abilities built into the software is a modeling tool that allows the user to build virtual objects in the virtual world. The terms of service guarantee that the users will retain all copyrights to the substances they design and create. With their digital rights management, the virtual community of Second Life generated approximately $55 million of real money last year. By having such a unique way to create an asset, the user must choose a unique way to protect it for heirs.

I would suggest a Digital Asset Trust because Second Life will only transfer an account when there is a relevant legal documentation. By setting the account up in the name of a trust, licenses and use restrictions will no longer apply to transfer of property to another. If you would like assistance in protecting your Second Life account and property, contact a Florida Estate Planning Lawyer today.

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Gerry Beyer, author of the Wills, Trusts & Estate Professors Blog has an interesting article on a novil service called Deathswitch. This service could be used to provide some of the services I have discussed in relation to the Digital Asset Trust.

There are many things that people may want to be handled a certain way after their death. Deathswitch.com, offers peoplethe ability to send messages or inform people in the event they are critically injured or disabled.

Deathswitch is an automated system that regularly prompts users for a password. If the user fails to respond timely, the system assumes that he or she is dead or critically disabled and e-mails pre-scripted messages. Each person can pick the frequency of the prompts and the maximum time to respond. These time-frames can range from one day to one year. Gerry Beyer states that some of the ways in which Deathswitch can be used include:

  • Sending computer passwords to co-workers and family
  • Providing loved ones with bank account and other financial information
  • Making known one’s final wishes
  • Sharing unspeakable secrets
  • Leaving love notes
  • Having the last word in an argument
  • Providing the loved ones with funeral instructions

Neil Hendershot also discusses this service on his blog where he ponders the ramifications of a premature discharge of an intended postmortem email message
I have also discussed the need for this type of service in my articles on Digital Asset Trusts.

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Eleanore

Eleanore

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