How To Access An Apple Account After Someone Passed Away
Apple is a household name and a dominating brand in the world of technology. Almost everyone owns an iPhone, has an Apple ID and/or Apple iCloud account associated with their phones. With the increasing concerns of digital privacy, Apple has raised the bar on their policies meaning there will be more difficulties in the unfortunate event that the owner of that ID or account passes away. Heirs to a loved one’s estate may want access to photos, videos, and other memories stored on these devices and accounts. If you do not have your loved one’s username and password, it is unlikely that you will be able to access this information… So, what can you do?
Apple provides a list of what they will require if you wish to access a deceased loved one’s devices and information stored on iCloud accounts. First, Apple will require that you provide them with a court order authorizing Apple to give you the requested information. The only way you are able to do that is by being appointed as the personal representative of the deceased’s estate, which is accomplished by opening a probate action in court. If this is done, the court order must then include the following information:
- that the requestor is the decedent’s legal personal representative, agent, or heir;
- the decedent’s Apple ID;
- the name of the next of kin of the person requesting the information;
- that the decedent was the user of all accounts associated with the Apple ID;
- the name of the decedent;
- that Apple is ordered by the court to assist in the access to the decedent’s information from the decedent’s accounts.
Once you obtain the required court orders, you can contact Apple’s customer support and proceed with requesting the information.
Moreover, for security reasons, Apple will not unlock a person’s iPhone, iPad, Macbook or Desktop that is protected with a passcode, unless they first erase all the information stored on the device. Thus, the best way to assure that your loved ones will be able to access the information stored in your devices is to back up your information to your Apple Cloud and even save things on an external server.
It is important to note that, once again for security reasons, there is no way to get around the need for a court order. That means that being listed in someone’s Last Will and Testament does not grant you authority over any Apple accounts unless approved by a Judge and even then, you might not receive all the information you need.
So, the answer is yes, it is possible to access a deceased loved one’s iCloud account with Apple, but you will first need to open a probate case and obtain the required court documents from a probate court.
When it comes to administering an estate in Florida, there are several nuisances involved. In the age of technology, administering an estate may be further complicated when big tech companies have their own procedures to access a loved one’s information.
The Florida Probate & Family Law Firm has a team of experienced Probate and Family attorneys located in Coral Gables, Florida. As attorneys who have extensive knowledge in Probate, we understand it can be a time-consuming and complicated process. If you currently have questions regarding a probate issue, contact us to set up an appointment to evaluate your options. We serve the entire state of Florida so call us at 305-677-5119 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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