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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Burns

Why Estate Planning Must Go Digital

I’m curious. What was Eminem’s attorney’s response when he sent him an email requesting to add his latest asset class to his estate?

“Dear Lawyer, I would like to add my NFT portfolio Shady Holdings on OpenSea and my latest $460K purchase, “EminApe” of the “Bored Ape Yacht Club”, to my will. Please advise.”

Considering how challenging it was after my divorce to get my lawyer to simply “delete name here and put new name there”, I can only imagine the response lies somewhere between “what the F*** are you talking about?” and “let me research the metaverse and get back to you $6,000 later.”

Wealth and Family Building is Changing: Wealth and Family Protection Must Follow

The economy is diversifying. Asset classes are no longer limited to stocks, bonds, and real estate and the way we buy and sell assets is expanding through digitization everyday. Now retail investors have access to brokerage accounts, crowdfunding platforms, marketplaces that enable fractional ownership in assets, investment opportunities in funds, investment opportunities in alternative debt products, and the list goes on. Moreover, with the explosion of the digital asset space and the metaverse ahead of us, NFTs, tokens, and new forms of ownership are popping up every day.

Beyond financial considerations, family building looks different than before. People are getting married later in life, or not at all, and divorce rates hover above 50%. In general, life just moves quicker, changes more, and younger generations have grown up with access to the world at their fingertips.

Wealth building and family building looks different than it has in the generations before; therefore, wealth and family protection must as well. There is no way that the traditional form of estate planning can continue. People need products that are flexible, easy to change, and affordable. And even if solutions within the digital products don’t have all the answers yet, their access to on demand customer support gives an experience that makes the user feel heard and valued.

Why I Went Digital

  1. Divorce. I became frustrated with my estate attorney's lack of urgency to get my estate documents amended.

  2. The need to amend my estate made me value flexibility on my own time.

  3. Cost. Paying a lawyer to amend my estate plan was expensive.

What Questions am I Researching Now About Estate Planning? Post to Come with Answers Later!

  • Beneficiary designations on my digital wallets (Coinbase, Metamask)?

  • Beneficiary designations on various crowdfunding platforms?

  • Beneficiary designations on alternative asset platforms I’ve invested through?

  • What is the best way to include my angel investments in my will?

  • How to include tokens and NFTs in our estate plans?

  • How do we incorporate DAOs in our estate plans?

  • Should I buy EminApe in my name or should my trust buy it?

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