“One day I may need this.” We have all had that thought cross our minds as we sift through bank statements, letters, and other important documentation deciding what should stay and what should go. But what is worth saving and what is better off in the shredder? The answer largely depends on the type of document and the amount of time that’s passed since the document was issued. Check out our tips for work and home to keep you organized and safe from identity theft.
Shredding Documents at Home
Tax audits and receipts, home sale, purchase, lease, or improvement documentation should be shredded after 6-7 years. Pay stubs, bank statements, medical bills, and records can be shredded after one year. Everything else, go ahead and shred. To keep your identity safe and secure, shred anything with your name, phone number, address on it, social security number, or banking information on it.
Shredding Documents at Work
It’s important for the safety of your business and your employees that you shred employee application forms, ID badges, and records when they leave the business, financial information, branded, damaged or faulty goods, as well as supplier records or information. Some paperwork is best kept for a few years before shredding such as budgets and purchase orders. Use your best judgment.
What Documents Should You Save?
Any physical copies of anything related to state or federal matters, including certifications, licenses, or deeds should be saved indefinitely. These are important forms of identification that are typically only valid in their original form and can be a lengthy process to replace.
Keeping any proof of warranty for the duration you own the warranted product is essential to ensure you receive proper service if the product breaks or malfunctions. A good rule of thumb is to keep anything that would be a hassle to replace causing you to sit on the phone with customer service for hours or go to a government office.
The same rules apply to work documents as personal documents. If the document is going to be hard to replace, keep it in a safe spot. There are a few extra documents you want to keep an eye out for like union agreements, procedure records, training manuals, bylaws, insurance records, accident reports, claims, legal and important correspondence, copyrights and trademarks, articles or incorporation, and actuarial reports.
Contact R4 for Additional Document Management and Shredding Services!
If you need any additional help with document management or shredding your old documents, contact us today! We can store your company’s important documents and provide you access to them whenever you need via the internet. We can also deliver your documents directly to your office or send them via fax, scan, and email. If you have documents you want to permanently dispose of, our convenient shred trucks serve the greater Chicagoland area and will drive right to your business.