Maryland Bar Bulletin
Publications : Bar Bulletin : October 2005

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Are You Ready to Go Now?
By Pat Yevics

The weekend of September 10, I heard an excellent program on American Public Media’s program Marketplace Money. Hillary Wicai reported on what she called the “Let’s-Go-Now Box.” It was a list of all-important papers/documents that you should have in one location with which you can literally pick up and go in the event of an emergency. Wicai suggested that you have a copy of all these documents and papers in a file box or some other container that you can take with you. It obviously would not include everything in your business, but it could include enough to minimize the problems that you might later have in proving who you are or otherwise gaining access to information.

According to Wicai, you should have these documents (or copies) in a fireproof safe at all times, and with you in case of an emergency:

bullet Copy of drivers license (front and back)
bullet Copies of credit cards (front and back)
bullet Health insurance card
bullet Property deeds and titles
bullet Basic info about employee benefits
bullet Auto and homeowners insurance
bullet Life and umbrella liability insurance
bullet Wills
bullet Trusts
bullet Powers of attorney and other estate documents
bullet Copies of last three state and federal tax returns
bullet Children’s adoption papers
bullet Marriage and birth certificates
bullet Passports
bullet Military discharge papers
bullet A list of the entire contents of your wallet

Also, take the time to do a household inventory. Go room by room with a video recorder and document your belongings.

For more information, listen to the entire program online at http://marketplacemoney.publicradio.org/display/web/2005/09/09/the_paper_trail/.

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Publications : Bar Bulletin: October 2005

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