Social media has been a huge game changer in how we interact with others. It’s also become one more thing family members have to take care of after a loved one dies.
With over 2.74 billion users and counting, Facebook is by far the most popular social media platform. There are users of all ages around the world that have accounts for personal use, fun and business. No matter how a deceased loved one used their Facebook account you have three options for managing it after their death.
Do Nothing With the Facebook Account
Some families opt to just leave the account as is. Since no one else should be able to get into the account to make changes it will simply stay the way it was when your loved one passed away. However, this isn’t the most secure option.
Request to Memorialize the Facebook Account
If Facebook discovers that a person passed away they will automatically memorialize the account. When an account is memorialized it’s kind of like it’s frozen with the content viewable based on the settings that your loved one selected, but no one can login to the account. Facebook suggests using this option because it’s more secure than simply leaving an account as is since no one can login and make changes.
For friends and family, a memorialized Facebook account is a place where they can share memories, look at photos and organize tributes. It’s like a digital memorial.
There are two methods for memorializing a Facebook account:
- If your loved one named you as the legacy contact you can switch the account status and manage the memorialized Facebook account. This allows you to do some basic things to the account like changing the profile picture and responding to friend requests.
- If you aren’t a legacy contact you can still request to have the account switched to memorialize status by contacting Facebook and providing proof that your loved one passed away.
When the account is memorialized you won’t receive the login information. However, after the memorialization request is approved, friends and family may be able to add to the timeline. The legacy contact can also:
- Accept a friend request.
- Update the profile picture.
- Update the cover photo.
- Pin a tribute post.
- Choose who else can pin tribute posts.
The account will show “Remembering” next to the profile picture to indicate it’s a memorialized account.
Request to Have the Facebook Account Removed
Families that prefer not to manage a memorialized Facebook account can request that it be removed. The account owner can also use the settings to specify that their account should be deleted after death.
To have a Facebook account removed you must be a verified immediate family member. You’ll have to provide documentation that proves you are the deceased’s parent, sibling, spouse or child. Once you’re verified you’ll then need to provide Facebook with proof of your loved one’s passing. The easiest way to do this is to send a copy of the death certificate.
If you don’t have the death certificate you’ll have to send proof of authority that shows you are managing the deceased’s affairs. Proof of authority can include power of attorney documentation or a last will and testament.
Do keep in mind that requesting to have a Facebook account removed will cause the account to be deleted permanently. If you choose to have a loved one’s Facebook account memorialized you can still request to have it removed at a later date.
At Green Cremation Texas we help families navigate unfamiliar waters after losing a loved one. Our experts can provide support and guidance on the steps to take to make all the necessary arrangements. Give us a call, text or email any time of day to connect with a team member.