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It’s that time of year again; high winds, unpredictable storms, and of course, tornadoes. In addition to creating a disaster preparedness plan for your family, be sure to protect your legal documents during these events. Below are several tips to follow so that you can ensure your important paperwork is safe if your home is damaged or destroyed in a natural disaster.
1. Make sure to back up electronically. Having an electronic backup, such as a secure cloud storage, can be useful. Electronic versions can serve as a legally valid substitute for a paper copy of your important documents in some circumstances.
2. Use a safe box. Whether this is a fire/water resistant one in your home or a safety deposit box at your local bank, using these types of boxes can be an easy precaution to the more minor natural disasters. These types of boxes can protect your important items during a natural disaster so that there is one less thing you need to worry about during a difficult time.
3. Create a “go” bag. This is useful when you are forewarned about a disaster, because a “go” bag can include all of your family documents, financial paperwork, legal documents, vaccination records, immigration and residency documents, among others safe and close to you.In addition to keeping all of your critical documents safe, make sure to have at least one extra copy in an easily accessible, off-site location and keep them in a sealed plastic bag.
If important documents are ever destroyed in a natural disaster, do not neglect replacing these documents as it will be incredibly important later on for you and your family. If you’ve not created your own will, trust, power of attorney, or health care directive, the chances of your family having to face an unprepared crisis are even greater than having to deal with a natural disaster. Call us to get started with your preparation.