Are you financially safe in a disaster?

Your Guide to State, Local, Federal, Estate + International Taxation

Do you have a plan for your household in the event a disaster strikes? The recovery process can move along faster if your personal financial, insurance, medical and other records are accessible. Here are a handful of tips that can assist you in becoming financially safe in a disaster.

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Update emergency plans. Ensuring an emergency plan is updated annually will help as life and business situations are always changing. A disaster can happen at any time.

Have electronic copies of documents. Keep your documents somewhere safe and secure. Anything like tax returns, bank statements and insurance policies should be stored in a secure location. Many institutions now offer electronic access to your documents making it simple to obtain. If not provided electronically, be sure to scan your original paper copies and save them to a flash drive or in the cloud.

Take photos of prized possessions. Claiming insurance and tax benefits can go smoother when you take pictures or videotape your valuables. The IRS offers a workbook where taxpayers can keep record of their belongings room-by-room.

Know that tax relief is available when disaster strikes. The disaster must be declared a disaster on a federal level. The IRS provides a place on their website where you can visit your state to see what is available for disaster tax relief. Personal casualty and theft losses are only deductible to the extent they are federally declared disasters. Certain counties that qualify for disaster relief already warrant extensions for filing and payments on tax form.

For more disaster-related information you can call an IRS specialist at 866-562-5227, visit more concepts on the IRS website, or contact a Henry+Horne professional for assistance.

Cierra Tate