Safest Places to Store Your Vital Records

Keeping your vital records safe and secure is crucially important. You never know when you’re going to need your certified birth certificate or other files to provide your identity or register for government services.

In this article, we’re going to look over what documents you should keep safe and how. Knowing when and where to store your vital records can prove essential to avoiding headaches when you urgently need your documents.

What Vital Documents Should Be Stored?

Essential documents such as your birth certificate, and marriage or divorce papers should be kept safe and secure in case you need to provide information about yourself.

These should be securely kept along with other vitally important documentation such as your medical information, bank account numbers, tax returns, or insurance policies for your home and/or car.

The vital records you should consider safely storing include the following:

Where to Store Essential Vital Records

Your vital records are with you throughout your life. Therefore it is important to keep them secure somewhere dry, where they are within easy reach but not out in the open.

It is unfortunately not possible to laminate a birth certificate and other important documents like your marriage papers. This is because it can make it harder to confirm whether these are the official records or not.

The best places to secure your vital records include the following options.

Home Safe

A home safe is one of the most secure and convenient places to store original copies of your essential documents. Not only do safes make it much harder to steal your records, but they also can protect against fire and flood.

Several types of home safes are flame and water-resistant, meaning you’re prepared in case any emergencies happen. You will also have all the copies of your documents available in an easy-to-find place on your property.

Safe Deposit Box

Another option is to keep the copies of your vital records in a safe deposit box at a local bank, post office, or credit union. This is perhaps one of the most secure ways to keep documents as they will be heavily protected at all times by the workers at the bank or institution.

However, be aware that there are some personal records you shouldn’t keep in a safe deposit box. This includes legal documents such as durable power of attorney or living wills as these may need to be accessed by other people aside from you in order to function.

Accordion Folder

Accordion folders prove practical for keeping documents in good condition and in an easily accessible place. You can use these organizers to keep everything well ordered so you can find your files quickly. The folder can also be quickly located and carried from your home in case of emergencies.

Of course, accordion folders are much less secure than safes and safety deposit boxes. To mitigate this issue, it’s wise to store it in a sound location such as a filing cabinet or cupboard where it can’t easily be disturbed or stolen.

Cloud Storage

It is also sensible to consider digitally backing up your vital records, in addition to keeping your original copies safely secured. Using cloud storage offers a safe and easily accessible way to locate your files.

However, it’s important to keep hard copies in addition to your digitally stored records. This is because cloud storage isn’t 100% failsafe and you may need to present physical, certified copies of your vital records.

Why to Keep Your Vital Records Safe

Vital records are government-issued documents that provide important information about you. These are considered some of the most trustworthy forms of identification.

Items like your birth certificate are often used to register for essential government benefits and services. Therefore, having them handy can save time and stress when carrying out important procedures.

If you’ve been unlucky enough to lose any of your vital records, you should replace them as soon as possible. You may be required to present one of your identification documents to do something as simple as opening a bank account.

Remember, you can order replacement birth certificates quickly and easily online. All you need to do is provide the correct information for your local state recorder’s office and you’ll be sent a brand new certified copy of your document directly to your home address.