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In Case You Get Hit by a Bus: How to Organize Your Life Now for When You're Not Around Later

Task: Digital Accounts: Email & Social Media

This article on personal planning is provided by Everplans — The web's leading resource for planning and organizing your life. Create, store and share important documents that your loved ones might need. Find out more about Everplans »

angel email

If you already use one of the main providers we already mentioned in a previous task: Gmail, Apple, Microsoft, then you’re ahead of the game.

If you use Yahoo, aol, or another service like a work or personal account set up through an exchange, treat it the way you would Gmail or Outlook. Provide who should access, how they can access it, and what you want done with it. 

For example you could say “don’t delete this until you no longer need it. Monitor it for bills, statements, and people who are trying to get in touch with me. Almost every account I have is tied to this email and you can use it to gain access, reset passwords, and change the email for that service to one of yours if you want to keep it going.” You can also tell them you’re trusting them with all of your personal correspondences so treat it with respect and please don’t snoop around.

When it comes to social media accounts, we already covered Facebook (which also owns Instagram), which leaves other major networks that are very important to hundreds of millions including Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Reddit, Pinterest and so many others.

The one standout is Twitter, which might require a Facebook-like level of instructions if you’re a heavy user, especially if you use it to login to other accounts. The other social media sites depend on your level of usage. If you couldn’t care less about Pinterest, let it go. LinkedIn, which is owned by Microsoft, is mainly for work and if you’re gone that’s clearly not an issue anymore. Still, if you want a final message posted, or for your family to alert your friends, followers, colleagues of any arrangements, this is one way to go.

Speaking of LinkedIn, if you have any business or networking sites like CareerBuilder, Monster, Indeed, or Meetup they can be ignored or deleted without requiring much explanation unless you see a reason to add more instructions.

Your Task

Identify all your email and social media accounts, the level of importance for each account, what you want done with them after you’re gone, and how you plan on granting access. If you use a password manager you can write it directly in the notes field, if you use a digital document you can put it there, and last but not least you can put it in the Digital Accounts section of your Everplan.

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