Vital Records Challenge Part 3

If you knew that spending 15 minutes right now could save the people you love in the event of an emergency, would you do it? Of course you would!

As victims of Hurricane Katrina found, when you have to function after a major disaster, being without your driver’s license, birth certificate, social security card or bank account numbers can be a huge problem.  We are going to outline a list of documents that you will want to add to your Vital Records Binder you have been faithfully working on.  This list is one of the most important parts of your binder, and it is the one that will take the most time.  Remember to breath and take it slowly.

What to Documents to Store

  • List of insurance policies and contact information
  • List of bank accounts and contact information
  • List of debt obligations, due dates, and contact information
  • Your family’s passports
  • List of doctors and contact information
  • List of medications, prescription numbers, and contact information of all pharmacies that you use
  • Copy of durable power of attorney, living wills, and healthcare proxies – Yours and all those of which you are attorney-in-fact or healthcare surrogate
  • Copy of each of your wills and all those of which you are the executor
  • Safety deposit box keys
  • List of investment, retirement, and bank accounts, with all contact information
  • Your original Social Security card (when you’re not using it)
  • Account/Password Lists
  • Photo Back-Ups
  • Computer Back-Ups
  • Financial Back-Ups and Tax Forms

Where to Keep Your Documents

  • Some documents can be safely kept in a bank safe deposit box, but others should be kept somewhere that is easy to access. In addition, you may want to send copies of some to a trusted friend or relative in another state.
  • At minimum, you’ll need a sturdy metal file box, or a fire-resistant safe. No consumer safe is 100% fireproof, but it should be strong enough to protect your documents in typical house-fire temperatures.
  • Keeping a second set of back-ups with parents is a really smart idea if they live in another state. The odds of a major disaster striking both of you at once are low. Suggest that you swap documents.
  • As you go through each document, write where you keep it and how many copies you need. By then end of the two weeks, you should have everything you need to be prepared for an emergency.


Your challenge this week is to gather a copy of the above list.  Today, gather the first items on the list, make copies of them and divide them into 3 piles.  One to keep at your house and the other two to store at two separate locations far apart from each other.  Two or three days later, work on the 2nd line of the list, following the same steps listed above.  Keep adding to your piles until you have completed the list.  Remember to take it ONE STEP AT A TIME.  Even the turtle won the race because he never gave up and kept taking just one more step.  We believe in you!  You can do it!

Posted on April 29, 2009, in Emergency Preparedness and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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