Organize Your Life: Store Personal Information Online
Oftentimes, the number of papers & documents we generate just by moving through the world can be overwhelming and the need to store personal information online has risen more than ever.
For e.g. A simple doctor’s visit leaves you with three handouts, a bill, and a new prescription. Taking your car in to be serviced means another bill, and a date to jot down in your calendar. A new job means a new W-2, another 401k to roll over, new health and life insurances.
For many people, this information just gets thrown into a filing cabinet, in any order. Usually this is fine, but eventually, you find yourself frantically rifling through disorganized papers, looking for just that one document in the case of an emergency. That’s why it’s necessary to store personal information online where it can be accessed on a moment’s notice.
Luckily, the Jazmine Method is here to help. This week, we will be focusing on your storing your personal information online.
Personal Information Definition
Here at Jazmine, we like to more clearly define “personal information” as your wallet information. However, the category goes a little farther. Not only does it include your driver’s license and perhaps a green card or something else that actively lives in your wallet, but other identifying documents. Think birth certificate, social security card, passport, and any paperwork surrounding those documents.
Also, keep in mind that the Jazmine method is particularly useful if you are responsible for more than one person’s paperwork. Be sure to check each item for each member of your family, including children, dependent parents, or a spouse.
What Kind of Documents Should I Be Storing Online?
- Driver’s License. Scan your card and upload it to Jazmine–handy if you lose it and need to provide your license number. Also, enter the expiration date on your Jazmine calendar so you don’t end up in a DMV emergency!
- Birth Certificate. For a piece of paper you’re supposed to hold on to your entire life, it can be kind of easy to lose! Never fear, Jazmine.com has some pretty good instructions for getting a new Birth Certificate copy. Once you’ve got yours, scan it and upload it to Jazmine.com. You should also file your physical copy in your own “Personal Information” folder
- Social Security Card. Again, it’s pretty easy to replace your Social Security Card if it’s missing. Having a physical copy of your card is vital—you’ll need it every time you start a new job. However, this also means you might go years without needing it. All the better to know exactly where it’s filed!
- Passport. It probably doesn’t make sense to scan and upload this one, but you should take a moment to set reminders for renewing it!
What Other Documents or Special Cases Might Come Up?
Not everyone will have all of these documents or even some of them. However, these documents could form an important part of a personal information for you or a family member.
- Green Card, Visa, and Other Immigration Documents. If you have documents relating to your immigration status, they should go in this folder. Be sure to upload copies to Jazmine.com, and update your Jazmine calendar with any recurring renewal reminders.
- Name Change Documents. If you changed your name during marriage or divorce, be sure to keep this paperwork alongside other identity documents. Once you change your name, you don’t often have to re-prove your identity. However, it’s often a good idea to have copies of this paperwork anyways.
- Military Paperwork. If there are many papers, we would recommend filing them in their own folder. This is a strong contender for its own category. However, if that thought is getting overwhelming, begin by sorting them into
- School Paperwork. College and graduate school transcripts, diplomas and other documents should also be considered personal information and filed accordingly.
- Old IDs. This can include military I.D.s, college I.D.s, or simply expired Driver’s Licenses.
- Membership and Library Cards. Know which ones they are and what they belong to!
What Happens if I’m Missing Documents?
While some documents in the list above had specialized instructions for replacement, for most of these, we would suggest contacting the issuing department or institution. For governmental paperwork like birth certificates, marriage licenses, or death certificates, reach out to the Department of Vital Statistics in the state or county that you believe is applicable.
Give yourself a week to scan and file the documents, and another to send away for missing files! This process can be tricky, but the peace of mind it will give you when you’re finally done storing your personal information online is incomparable.
Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!