When tragedy strikes such as a natural disaster, theft, illness or even death, the last thing you want to worry about is if you can find everything you need. The problem is that most of us don’t want to think about horrible things happening. The reality is that they do happen and death escapes no one.
Are you prepared? This is a great question to start with. With a little preparation and planning you can feel better about the unknown. You may need other family members to take care of you or your affairs and this is going to really be helpful to them. The last thing anyone wants to do in the event of an emergency is to sift through papers. Preparation is the key to making this a little less stressful.
Let’s take a look at how to prepare.
Step 1 is to gather the following:
-Insurance policies & contact info
-Bank accounts & contact info (including investment and retirement)
-list of monthly debts & contact info
-original social security card
-health insurance cards
-list of medications and pharmacy phone number
-living wills, power of attorney and healthcare proxies
-your will and one you may be an executor for
-safe deposit keys
-birth certificate/death certificate
-loan payoff information
Step 2 is to find a safe place for all of these documents. I recommend a fireproof box. If you are tech savvy you could take a photo of as many of the documents as possible. Put them in a file marked Important docs in Google drive or on a flash drive. It is also good to make sure that anyone responsible for your estate or decisions regarding your care receive a copy of the necessary documents.
It may take a little work in getting all of this information gathered into one place but you will be glad once it’s done. So will your family members!