Emergencies are serious situations that happen unexpectedly. How can you be prepared for something that you do not see coming you may ask? To best handle an emergency situation, it is crucial to have quick and easy access to your emergency files. Emergency files could be anything from medical records to life insurance documents or naturalization papers. It is also important for someone in the family to know where these documents are in case you won’t be able to access them. If your family members don’t already know where these files are located, there is no better time than now to change that.
Compiling your documents can be a time-consuming task. The best practice is to gather all your paperwork and files when you are not rushed and can thoroughly go through your documents and decide which ones you truly may need in the midst of an emergency. While preparing for a potential emergency may seem premature, understand that if an emergency does happen, there may not be any time for you to do all of this.
Best way to organize everything is to have a binder or folder system, and it is important to keep it contained and portable. Here is our list of the documents that are most important and apply to most families during different kinds of emergencies. Depending on your circumstances, you may need additional documents.
Figure out a safe storage location outside of your home to keep all original files together. Consider utilizing a bank or safe deposit box. It’s always a good idea to also keep a digital and hard copy folder of photocopies at home where you can easily access them.
Ensure that your spouse or beneficiary know where your important documents are located and that they have the proper access in case they need it (passwords, PINs, or codes). Have duplicate keys made if your documents are stored in a safe or storage locker. Label keys clearly. Have an understanding with your spouse or beneficiary as to when is it appropriate for them to access these documents.
Make it a habit to add or remove documents and files on regular basis so you always have the most updated version of everything. Shred old documents.
Navy Mutual offers a safe and secure location to store your documents. They have their own vault for their members to utilize. Your documents could be stored in their facility and watched over. For more information about the Navy Mutual vault, call 800-628-6011. Remember that having a secure place for your documents is at the heart of any successful emergency plan.
Navy Mutual is here for you when emergency strikes, and their goal is to make any emergency less stressful for you. Whether you are setting up an emergency plan for yourself or your loved one, Navy Mutual can assist with things like life insurance, annuities, or veteran benefits. They can address any concerns you may have, and help you identify documents you may need and resources you can utilize. To become a member, reach out to Navy Mutual representative to inquire about your life insurance options and establish your emergency plan by calling 800-628-6011.
This article originally appeared on Navy Mutual’s website.
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