One of the main roles of your executors is to collect in your estate before settling any outstanding debts and distributing your estate in accordance with your Will. But will your executors know where to find all of your assets?
More and more assets/accounts in this modern era are held “online”. Historically, your executors may have been through all of your paperwork at your property, discovered bank statements and then contacted your bank to close the accounts. If your account is held online, there is a chance that you may not have paperwork relating to the holding and your executors could miss this. Likewise, it is quite possible that you may have a balance held on an account with a website, perhaps an online bookmaker or lottery site or you may hold a virtual currency such as Bitcoin. If your executors are unaware of it or unable to access it after your death then this can cause additional complications during the administration of your estate.
Of course, the same applies to more sentimental items such as photographs stored electronically. If you have password protected your computer/tablet then those memories could be lost forever.
So what can I do now?
The first step would be to ensure that if you do have such assets, your executors are aware of them and where to find them/how to access them. You can discuss this with them during your lifetime or even leave a sealed envelope with your Will containing such details. It is of course vital to keep such a list up to date.
For more information, or some preliminary confidential advice contact a member of our Private Client team from your local office.