Whether you are in your 20s or 50s, estate planning is an important job you should get done as soon as possible. Waiting for the worst to happen to plan out your assets will only result in rush and errors. Once your estate plan is put together, you can rest assured that your family members and loved ones will be taken care of when you can longer be there for them.
During the estate planning process, most people forget about one crucial step: storing the legal paperwork in a safe and secure place. However, at the same time, you should store them somewhere they are easy to access because your family will need them when you are gone. For expert legal advice, consult with an estate planning attorney today.
Safest places to keep your estate planning documents
- A fire-proof and flood-proof safe.
Buying a fire-proof and flood-proof safe to keep your estate planning documents is much better than storing them on a shelf in your cabinet. It is recommended that the safe is made of heavy metal and difficult to move so that robbers cannot easily carry and steal it away. The safe should still be kept in a private location inside your house, and only a limited number of people should have the knowledge and how to open it.
- Safe deposit box at a bank.
If you feel it is unsafe to keep the estate planning documents in your home, you can keep them in a safety deposit box in the bank. These safety boxes are made of strong metal and can be rented out to keep anything that you consider important or precious. However, it is important to remember that these safety boxes can become difficult to access when you become incapacitated or pass away.
How to store your estate planning documents digitally?
Thanks to technological advancements, you can store your estate planning documents digitally. Some options for digital storage include the following:
- Document management system.
- Cloud-based platforms, such as Google Drive.
- A portable storage device, such as a USB or hard drive.
Since it is easier to steal documents online, be sure to encrypt your files after storing them. Encrypting allows you to protect your documents from people who are not authorized to view them. You can also set a password to lock the files so that only those who know the password can gain access. It is usually recommended to share the password with the executor and one close friend or family member.
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