Too often, we allow the busyness of everyday life to postpone preparing for life’s most unexpected—and significant—events, which can include accidents, emergency hospitalizations, or worse.
Basic Emergency Binder
This binder should include all the information you or someone in your family could need in an emergency that isn’t life threatening. It should be kept in a private, yet convenient location in your home so you or a family member can grab it in seconds and head out the door.
Include in this binder:
- Doctors’ and dentists’ names and contact information
- Insurance policy numbers and name of the primary insured
- Information on important points of your medical history, including allergies, previous surgeries, medications, and advance medical directives (such as power of attorney as regards to health care decisions)
- Family contact information including school addresses and employer phone numbers
- Personal information including clergy and/or religious affiliations, birth dates, social security numbers, photocopies of state issued picture ID, and simple details like height and weight
Visit your local hospital’s website to see exactly what information they require upon admittance and be sure this information is included in your binder. Each person who lives in your home should have all of these documents in the Basic Emergency Binder and should know where this binder is stored.
Storing an Emergency Binder
This binder is one you’ll want to keep in a fireproof box with a UL rating of at least 350 for 60 minutes. Additionally, you’ll want the fireproof box to be waterproof (do not buy a box that is labeled “water resistant,” as it is not protection enough against water emitted from a firefighter’s hose). Never store this binder in a safety deposit box, as laws surrounding these boxes may prohibit someone from accessing it in case of your death.
Life is uncertain, and one way to be responsible and show love for the people in your life is to be as prepared as possible for all the tough things life can throw at us. An emergency binder can also help others to quickly access what they need to settle your estate, pay your taxes and debts, and wrap up the details of your life.
We all hope that our lives will never cross the path of an disaster which requires us to use our emergency binders. However, in case you do, you’ll know you have done as much preparation as possible to help make a stressful situation less so.
The Just in Case Document Binder System will walk you through the process of collecting all your vital information. A workbook obviously isn’t required, but with one you’re less likely to forget something important.