Judiciary Committee Report – week 7, 2017

SSB 1085 – Changes to controlled substance schedules
SSB 1086 – Fiduciary access to digital assets



Senate Study Bill 1085 makes changes to the controlled substance schedules. Many of these schedule changes and placements are intended to conform to United States Drug Enforcement Administration actions that have placed controlled substances on various schedules. The Committee adopted an amendment that would remove Division II of the bill, which repeals Code Chapter 124B (precursor substances).
[2/21: short form]


Senate Study Bill 1086 creates a new Code Chapter: “Iowa Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act.”

This bill will help Iowa law address changes in technology that allow peoples to store property and communications as data on a computer server that is accessed via the Internet. As defined in the bill, a digital asset means “an electronic record in which an individual has a right or interest.” In addition, “electronic” is defined as “relating to technology having electrical, digital magnetic, wireless, optical, electromagnetic, or similar capabilities.” Examples of digital assets include a person’s Facebook account, Hotmail account, Google accounts and electronic banking accounts.

Under current law, when a person dies or becomes incapacitated, heirs and fiduciaries may be prohibited from accessing their digital assets. This bill provides a uniform and consistent framework to allow individuals and their fiduciaries to plan for dealing with a person’s digital assets in those situations. Under the bill, Internet users will have control over their digital assets by specifying if their digital assets should be preserved, distributed to heirs or destroyed.  Companies will not be able to release digital assets to fiduciaries without a user’s consent. The bill provides default rules to govern access to digital assets for executors and administrators of a decedent’s estate, agents under a power of attorney, conservators and trustees.
[2/21: short form]