• Troyer & Good, PC

Facebook After You Die



Facebook is the most popular social media site in the world. It boasts over 1.79 billion monthly active users and five new profiles are created every second. Likely you have a Facebook account yourself. What happens to your account when you die? You can tell Facebook in advance whether you want your account permanently deleted or memorialized. If you want it permanently deleted at your death, you can choose this in your settings. Under Security, you go to Legacy Contact and check the box below Account Deletion. Then follow the on-screen instructions.


You can also have your account memorialized after you die. A memorialized account is a place for family and friends to gather and share memories after you die. The word “remembering” will appear next to your name on your profile. Your content (i.e. photos, posts, and profile) remains on Facebook and is visible to the audience with whom it was shared. No one can remove content from a memorialized account. Depending on privacy settings, your friends may share memories on your Timeline. Memorialized profiles will not appear in public spaces, such as suggestions for people you may know, ads, or birthday reminders. No one can log in to a memorialized account and only the legacy contact (discussed below) can change the account. Friends and family can request that your account be memorialized after you pass.


You can choose to name a legacy contact to manage your memorialized Facebook account after you die. (You must be eighteen or older to name a legacy contact). Your legacy contact can write a pinned post for your profile (e.g. share a final message on your behalf or provide memorial service information), respond to new friend requests, and update your profile picture and cover photo. Your legacy contact cannot login to your account, remove or change past posts, read your messages, or remove any of your friends. In your legacy settings, you can allow a legacy contact to download an archive of information you’ve shared after your account is memorialized. In this download, your legacy contact will receive photos, videos, wall posts, profile, contact info, events, and friend list. The legacy contact will not receive messages, ads you clicked, pokes, security and settings info, and photos you synced but did not post. Facebook will provide access to this type of information if a valid Will or other legal document expresses your clear consent.


Facebook cannot provide login information to your account after you die because it is against Facebook policy. In rare cases, Facebook will consider requests for additional account information or content. Facebook requires proof of authorization and a Court Order. There is no guarantee that Facebook will provide the requested information. Also, verified immediate family members (or the executor) can request that your account be removed after you die. The fastest way to process a request for removal is to provide a scan or photo of your death certificate. If this is not available, the person can send in a document to prove authority (e.g. Power of Attorney, birth certificate, Last Will and Testament, or estate letter) and a document to prove your death (e.g. obituary or memorial card).

Fort Wayne, Indiana attorneys offering services in estate planning, Wills, Trusts, estate and trust administration, probate, elder law, Medicaid, asset protection, and guardianship.

​© 2020 by Madyson Shannon