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Domain Names, Web Sites And Estate Planning

If you're a domain registrant, have you given thought to what will happen to your domain names if you should pass away? 

When preparing a will, the focus is usually items such as land, property, cash, shares and precious physical possessions. 

Something that may be often overlooked is virtual property - such as any website addresses you have registered and associated web sites. These can be quite valuable, both from a financial and sentimental aspect.

The digital revolution has brought new complexity in this regard; including virtual assets such as the content of social media accounts, photos posted online, access to email addresses and domain names. These are all items that should be considered when drawing up or updating a will.

While this may seem rather straightforward, there are a few important issues to bear in mind.

An example is a potential complication with Australian domain names with regard to eligibility.

Unlike generic TLD's (Top Level Domains) including .COM, .NET and .ORG; to hold an Australian name such as .COM.AU, the registrant must be able to meet the eligibility criteria. If the person is unable to, he/she could lose the domain name.

Something else to consider is if you're a sole trader and you leave your business to your children, will the children know how to access and manage the web site? If not, all the effort you put in over the years could be lost and what was intended to be a valuable gift could become worthless.

This is where succession planning is important.

This article mainly served to put the issue on your radar - for further information, it's important to consult your legal counsel to ensure that anything you put in place in this regard is rock-solid. 

In the lead-up to gaining legal advice, a good place to start is to take inventory of your digital assets so you know what is of value; sentimental or otherwise . Then detail who you want to have access to or ownership over what - and what sort of assistance they may need in order to access and maintain it.

Available Domain Name Search & Register


How to register a name: Enter your choice in the search tool and click 'GO'. If after the check the domain names search results show your choice is available, you will then have the option to proceed to purchase registration; which is a very quick and easy process - start a search and find your ideal website address now.