Some people love Facebook and can’t get enough of it, whereas others can’t stand the social media platform. Whether you’re someone who loves Facebook to keep family and friends informed or just uses it to connect business associates, you may not have given much thought to what happens to your Facebook account when you die.
Most people mistakenly think that their social media accounts will live on forever. While that would be nice, the fact of the matter is that Facebook accounts can become inactive and can die right along with their owners. That is, unless you make provisions to keep this from happening.
Option 1. Have Someone Memorialize Your Facebook Account
With Facebook, your account can be memorialized or deleted, according to your preference. When this happens, your family and friends can share stories, memories, and photos of you, and the word “Remembering” will be shown next to your name and any shared content will be visible to anyone who was able to view your content previously.
However, your profile will no longer show up to announce your birthday or suggested friends. For these features to become active, you must list a legacy contact via Facebook. This person will care for your account until it becomes a memorial page. Your legacy contact can do things such as leaving a final message on your profile, editing your profile and cover images, and responding to friend requests; however, they can’t change or remove posts and photos you posted in the past.
Option 2. Have Someone Delete Your Facebook Account
Your other option is to have your representative permanently delete your account when you die. Then, your Facebook profile, images and content disappear entirely when you transition.
Option 3. Have Someone Keep It Going As If You Were Alive (Not Recommended)
Some people decide to give others their password so that they can keep the posts going. Keep in mind, however, that having someone (outside your legacy contact) manage all aspects of your page, as if you were alive, is a violation of Facebook service term policies and will get your account suspended.
You have many options as to what to do with your Facebook account when you die. For those of you who decide not to plan, your friends and family members can still request that your posts be memorialized or removed entirely. Either way, it’s important to think about your options now and plan accordingly to ensure that your wishes are carried out.
For assistance on understanding how social media accounts work after death or developing an estate plan that addresses your social media and other digital assets, contact Ibekwe Law, PLLC.