What if there was a fire at your home or a tornado was coming and you were told to evacuate immediately, would you be able to grab a binder with all of your important papers? I certainly hope so, but if not keep reading and we will get you properly set up with the documents binder of your dreams.
First. Go to an office supply store. Pick up a 4-5 inch binder in the color of your choice. I chose red as I can always locate it at any time. Also buy some section dividers, a set of the see-through paper film, and a few sections with pockets.
Use the following download to guide you in making the tabs for the sections of your binder. Depending on what stage of life you are in, they may differ some from the outline.
Now use the following to collect or print all forms and begin to make sections for each in your binder.
Will, Durable Power of Attorney
Medical Power of Attorney, Living Will/Directive to Physicians/HIPPA release form
Declaration of Guardian and Appointment of Agent to Control Disposition of Remains
Revocable Living Trust
Driver’s license – Make a copy
Safe Deposit Keys and Bank address
Social Security Cards – Do NOT carry them in your wallet
Birth Certificates, Marriage Certificate, Adoption papers, Divorce papers, Military discharge
Copies of home and auto insurance, with Insurance Agent name and phone number
Home closing documents
Home Title, Car titles and other Vehicle Titles
Utilities phone numbers and account numbers
Medical and prescription insurance cards
Prescription names and amounts
Doctors names and phone numbers
Bank names and account numbers
Name of financial adviser and phone number
Investment account numbers
Copy of taxes
Original life insurance policies
Loans and outstanding debts
Credit card copies
Royalties, Certificates of Deposit, Stock Certificates, and other investments
Family and Friends
Home helpers and neighbors that have access to your home
“To be contacted” in case of death or illness
Passwords to all online accounts, as well as answers to security questions
Burial policies, Pre-paid funeral arrangements
Now, take a look at your binder. You did a great job. Now put it in a place you can quickly grab it if necessary. And keep it up to date as you receive renewals or changes of any kind.