Legal Insight from the Times

The New York Times ran an article on May 20th with some good legal insight into the issues surrounding death online. We’ve talked about the need for a “digital executor” before, but Patricia H. Char, a lawyer with K&L Gates in Seattle, warns that isn’t enough. Without a durable power of attorney document your executor may be accessing your accounts illegally, and that opens all sorts of issues, especially if other relatives accuse them of misuse.

Read more from the New York Times: When Others Need the Keys to Your Online Kingdom

Also on May 20th, WWAY in Wilmington, NC aired a story called Online After Death.

    About Evan Carroll

    Evan Carroll is an author, speaker and UX strategist who works to make digital experiences more personal, more emotional and more effective. A leader in the developing digital legacy and personal archiving arena, Evan is author and co-founder at The Digital Beyond and co-author of the book, Your Digital Afterlife: When Facebook, Flickr and Twitter Are Your Estate, What's Your Legacy?. Evan has appeared in numerous media outlets including The New York Times, NPR’s Fresh AirObit magazine, NPR’s Here and Now, Fox News, CNN and The Atlantic. A frequent speaker on both marketing and digital legacy, Evan has presented to audiences at SXSW Interactive (2010-2012, 2014), the Library of Congress, and the Internet Archive, among others. Evan holds BS and MS degrees in Information Science from UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. He can be contacted by emailing or via Twitter @evancarroll.  Evan's personal site is

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    One Response to Legal Insight from the Times

    1. Jeff February 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm #

      I’m not an attorney, but I have been told by our attorney that a “durable power of attorney” is only a legal document while the person is alive. Once the person passes, the POA is no longer usable. Control of the testator’s estate passes to the executor.

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