Posted on Sep 08, 2017 |News

September 8, 2017

NAM is pleased to announce that an article co-authored by Honorable Peter B. Skelos entitled The Digital Footprint After Death: Who Wears The Shoes?, will be published on Monday, September 11, 2017, by the New York Law Journal as part of Special Report on Trusts and Estates.

The article addresses the right of access to a decedent's digital assets and electronic communications upon death and examines New York's recently-enacted digital asset legislation, Article 13-A of the Estates, Power and Trusts Law.  The new provision seeks to balance the notion that the fiduciary of a decedent's estate “stands in the user's shoes after death” with “public policy which favor's respecting the user's privacy.”  Prior to Article 13-A, the Stored Communications Act thwarted efforts by fiduciaries and family members who sought access to a decedent's digital assets.  As more fully set forth in the article, under Article 13-A, access to digital assets and electronic communications is, in the first instance, “user-directed” as it recognizes the right of a user to declare his or her intent permitting or prohibiting access through a hierarchy of instruments such as online tools, inter vivos directives or testamentary instruments addressed to a service providers obligation to grant access and disclose certain digital records.  The statute also makes a distinction between a “catalogue of electronic communications” and the “content of electronic communications.”

Hon. Skelos is a retired justice of the New York State Appellate Division, and an accomplished legal practitioner in the area of Trusts and Estates Law, in addition to a wide variety of other practice areas.

He was named a National Law Journal 2017 Alternative Dispute Resolution Champion, as part of a select group of only 37 nationwide, and was voted a Top Ten Mediator by the 2016 New York Law Journal Annual Reader Rankings Survey.  Judge Skelos is well-versed in the law and is a highly regarded mediator and arbitrator for NAM.  He hears a wide variety of case types including construction, commercial, professional liability, insurance coverage, matrimonial, medical malpractice and personal injury matters.

Click here  to view Hon. Peter B. Skelos' resume.

Click here to view The National Law Journal's 2017 ADR Champions.

Click here to view the 2016 New York Law Journal Survey.


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