Authorizes the fiduciary of a decedent to take control of certain web site accounts of the decedent.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the estates, powers and trusts law, in relation to authorizing the fiduciary of a decedent to take control of certain web site accounts of the decedent
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1. Paragraph (b) of section 11-1.1 of the estates, powers and trusts law is amended by adding a new subparagraph 23 to read as follow: "unless expressly prohibited by the will or court order, to take control of, conduct, continue or terminate any account of the decedent on any social networking web site, microblogging or short message service web site or email service website."
PURPOSE AND JUSTIFICATION: This legislation will allow an individual to designate a loved one or a family member the authority to terminate a social media account and other messaging accounts after an individual's death. Many advocates believe that continuing to preserve the online presence of the deceased individual could be painful for loved ones. Additionally, it is likely that individuals who are close to the deceased will feel grief and pain when being reminded of their loss.
This legislation allows for an individual to assign a representative to control or terminate their online accounts. Critics suggest that many online users may not feel comfortable disclosing their personal information. However, this legislation does not make it mandatory to designate a person if they choose not to. It is equally important to be able to protect the privacy of the deceased. It is crucial to acknowledge the implications if someone were to abuse the account. For example, after the death of two young girls in Australia, thousands of people visited their face-book accounts leaving many negative comments and images. This could further contribute to the emotional damage of the friends and family. Additionally, emails and blogs are prone to hackers who may be able to obtain personal information from a deceased individuals account. This new legislation allows for these current issues to be addressed.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2013 - S.2429 Referred to Judiciary 2012 S.6629 Referred to Judiciary
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6532 IN SENATE February 4, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. CARLUCCI -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Judiciary AN ACT to amend the estates, powers and trusts law, in relation to authorizing the fiduciary of a decedent to take control of certain web site accounts of the decedent THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph (b) of section 11-1.1 of the estates, powers and trusts law is amended by adding a new subparagraph 23 to read as follows: (23) UNLESS EXPRESSLY PROHIBITED BY THE WILL OR COURT ORDER, TO TAKE CONTROL OF, CONDUCT, CONTINUE OR TERMINATE ANY ACCOUNT OF THE DECEDENT ON ANY SOCIAL NETWORKING WEB SITE, MICROBLOGGING OR SHORT MESSAGE SERVICE WEB SITE OR EMAIL SERVICE WEB SITE. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD06756-01-3