Structuring an estate plan is a demanding task, even for Georgia residents with relatively simple asset types. For those who invest money in many different ways, creating wills and other estate planning tools that cover all the bases can be even more of a challenge. That is especially true in cases where cryptocurrency plays a role.
Cryptocurrency is a relatively new type of financial asset, one that many people don't fully understand. The nature of cryptocurrency is defined by privacy and a lack of traditional oversight. Accounts are secure; so secure, in fact, that even account holders who forget their password have trouble accessing their own holdings.
Cryptocurrency accounts do not send out account statements through the mail. They aren't searchable by Social Security number. Information about the holdings isn't even sent to the IRS.
That means that heirs could be completely out of luck if their loved one did not leave behind clear and current details on where cryptocurrency wealth is held and how to access those accounts. Even if the heirs know that accounts exist, they would have no way to gain access to the wealth held within. This is one aspect of cryptocurrency that has many people asking for some type of guidance or oversight.
For those in Georgia who are using cryptocurrrency, including that information into estate planning is absolutely critical. Otherwise, heirs could be effectively locked out of a portion of their intended inheritance. Simply creating a list of all accounts and the passwords needed to access them is a great place to start. Updating that list from time to time, which is also recommended for wills, is equally important.
Source: CNBC, "That fortune will be lost if you don't add cryptocurrency assets to estate plan", Barry Glassman, May 1, 2018